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Everything posted by Bluehawk

  1. Bluehawk


    I find the light-gem/shadow balance to be quite strange in places, where the ground beneath your feet appears pitch black on default settings, but your light-gem is glowing faintly and you'll be in such a narrow space that you can't help but aggro an enemy (the dogs in the caves are especially hard to ghost past). If you crank up the brightness and gamma, you can see the edges of shadows more clearly but the whole aesthetic of the game is ruined. Sometimes you'll open a door near a light and the baked lightmap is static but your illumination seems to be dynamic, so it looks like there's a shadow flush with the doorway but your gem will light up anyway from direct line-of-sight with the lamp. If there were stencil shadows being drawn, this ambiguity wouldn't happen, or otherwise if enemies had more levels of alert with a forgiving curve, it wouldn't be such a touchy issue. Several times I thought to myself, "The Dark Mod did this a little bit better..." but these are still early days and I'm sure these features will be improved, since they're so fundamental. Things like light graduation and enemy sensitively levels will probably takes months or years to hone in perfectly and I'm liking what I see so far. The combat is meh, but optional, the world-building seems promising, and I love the look of the game. It's also great to hear the vocal talents of Stephen Weyte and Terri Brosius, though the VO is a bit sparse in the demo.
  2. This might sound odd, but I wish it were easier to kill rats in the Dark Mod using the sword. Presently it feels nearly impossible and you're better off using broadheads. There are maybe only a handful of times when you need to kill a rat, like in Chronicles of Skullduggery 3 or arguably Full Moon Fever, so it's not a huge problem (or a problem at all), but in an immersive sim, skewering a stationary rat on the tip of your sword really shouldn't be so tricky.
  3. The teller key simply opens the front door, you got it from the keybox in the lobby. The "teller safe key" is what you need.
  4. My go to answer for this question used to be Metal Gear Solid 1 for the original Playstation, but then I wondered now if I experienced it fresh for the first time today, as an adult in 2022 playing it as an old retro game on an emulator, I'd probably appreciate it academically, but not be totally enraptured by it as I was in 1999, when it was genuinely new and cutting edge for gaming, and like something I had never experienced before even in film or literature (I wasn't well-read at the time). This thought experiment would work better with recent releases that haven't had time to age yet, and don't have mountains of essays written about them to colour your expectations, but I can't think of any modern release that amazed me enough to warrant erasing them from my memory and playing them fresh again. But on the other hand, I didn't play Thief Gold and TMA until long after their release and they definitely still hold up today as fresh experiences, regardless of how "dated" they look, sound and feel, so maybe MGS would still amaze me... I'm just not sure. I'd definitely recognize more of the references and rip-offs Kojima was leaning on and it would be a different experience regardless.
  5. Melan's 3rd mission in the Penny Dreadful series, "Erasing the Trail", has a hidden memorial to Lady Rowena, a much-celebrated FM author for Thief 1 and 2, who passed away in 2016, not long before this mission was published. To access the memorial:
  6. I think dropping ray-tracing into Thief 1 and 2's levels would ruin their designed shadows and make sneaking around impossible, but a new game built from the ground up with raytracing in mind could be interesting.
  7. No, you'll find the "skeleton key" in the hands of a skeleton.
  8. One problem I had when replaying this mission recently was that fighting the skeleton in the shop would sometimes attract the attention of the guards on the street, so I had to quickload two or three times just for that opening sequence. And also the guards walking through the rain and thunder don't seem to have their hearing appropriately handicapped, so the player is at an unfair disadvantage generally when sneaking through those noisy environments.
  9. I can tell you where Tobin's apartment is, if you really want to spoil the sweet and fleeting joy of independent discovery... Do not open this spoiler tag lest you be stricken with incurable melancholy. Now for your next challenge, find the secret skeleton key that opens every door and chest in the mission.
  10. I noticed a funny quirk in this mission due to the new female protagonist. Guards have an idle animation where they'll stretch their arms out to get the kinks out of their shoulders or whatever and play a grunt sound, but in the ai_sfx.sndshd file, one of the avaliable oggs for "tdm_stretch" is "player_tired_1.ogg". That file among others is replaced by the new voice actress, so occasionally you'll hear male guards gasp like a woman before going back to their usual mumbling and grumbling. Regardless, I think the actress did a good job nailing a balance between being hopeful for the future and maybe a little naive but also calloused by her life of crime, not just a gender-swapped Corbin/Garrett and not a retread of Zaya from T2X. There's room for character development if she appears in a sequel, maybe visiting Northdale some day
  11. To get through the checkpoint requires a more face-to-face solution than the typical thief scenario.
  12. I notice in 1.1 performance improvements generally across the map, roughly 10 fps better in the busiest areas and even 30+ in simpler interiors. I think I've found a broken readable though. In the "Moonlit Manse" there's a spilled book with four pages to read. Three of them are fine, but when I frob the right-most page, the 2D sprite for the paper doesn't pop up, and I suddenly can't frob anything anymore, nor open my inventory window, or mantle up on ledges. I can fix this by reloading a save, and the bug is repeatable.
  13. Intel Core i7-2600K, 4 cores, 3.40GHz ATI/AMD Radeon R9 390 (8 GB GDDR5) 32 GB DDR3 physical memory I prefer to play at my native desktop resolution of 2560x1440, with low AO, low soft shadows, stencil shadows, no AA, medium LODs. I know my machine is about 5-10 years old now in parts, so I don't really have grounds to complain. I think the "problem" might just come down to lots of particle effects and a little bit of over-draw in the visportals. Sometimes exterior meshes like distant towers bleed into the interior scenes. Here are some examples, with n_ShowTris on 0, 1 and 2.
  14. Well I didn't get terribly great performance. I was frequently hovering around 30 fps even in simple interiors, for some reason. However, this is one of the greater FMs ever released so far for the Dark Mod, in my opinion. It's architecture and layout, difficulty balance, unique gameplay, readables and lore, all excellent across the board. Lots of opportunity for alternative routes and solutions - for example, I finished the mission with three sets of lockpicks and two sets of "peculiar glasses". So many little stories to discover and threads left open to interpretation or maybe a sequel... It's also a great twist on the usual plague quarter mission. I scored it 5/5/5.
  15. On the hardest difficulty there's an objective forbidding knockouts and kills, but it doesn't seem to register for all NPCs. For example, the civilian in red on fleet st. or the cook and servants on the ground floor of the mansion can all be knocked out or killed without triggering the fail-state, but killing most/all guards works correctly.
  16. I wish the last time I interacted with him wasn't just to complain about some irrelevant point on emergent gameplay, that was maybe an annoyance he could have done without. My condolences to his family, and my respects to all the great things he created.
  17. My framerate jumped from about a steady average of 30 throughout the map to 50-60. Great patch. The mission itself is excellent too, by the way.
  18. I think the particle-based fog from the skybox (?) is being rendered accidentally everywhere and possibly duplicated. This is what I see in the opening exterior, looking up at the sky with r_showTris 1 and 2 respectively. And just down the shaft with the broken ladder, if I crawl into the corner of the little maintenance tunnel/platform and stare at a corner where there should be relatively little going on, this is the result I get with showTris. Notice that the particles are being occluded but still rendered. One last example: shortly after passing the first set of cameras, the entrance hallway with the bulletin board on the left and water tank on the right. In this case, there seems to be a lot of overdraw for level geometry, as well as the flurry of particles.
  19. I also find "mansion_tense02" and '02a" to be annoying ambient tracks, because of their high dynamic range from quiet to loud. Not only can it obscure necessary sounds like guards' movements and the player's own foot steps on surfaces, but it also interrupts my train of thought if I'm talking out loud
  20. Does anything happen after finding or is there any way to interact with
  21. Most people have said she looks like Heather from Silent Hill 3.
  22. Ah, this might be the problem actually. I followed the link on the official release announcement to download the new 'tdm_installer' linked here under Windows (32-bit) - https://forums.thedarkmod.com/index.php?/topic/20460-new-tdm_installer-and-dev-builds/ ...But when I extracted it to my folder, the file had a "date modified" of 01/01/2000 (a little strange considering its "date created" is in 2021), so it got lost in the directory and looked like an old file. I absentmindedly used the older "tdm_update.exe" from 17/06/2020 which looked comparatively newer. That might be what caused the conflict in the first place.
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