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Fan Mission: The Glenham Tower by Sotha (2010/07/17)


Sotha

The Glenham Tower by Sotha (2010/07/17) Summer FM Vertical Contest Entry  

126 members have voted

  1. 1. 1. Gameplay: Enjoyment. Fun duration. Smooth flow, ect. Versus Bugs. Frustration, Boredom, framelag

  2. 2. 2. Appearance: Vertical use, Visual pleasure, lighting, visual style, deduct bad texturing etc.

  3. 3. 3. Story & Text: Story. Text. Briefing. Graphic storytelling



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I don't know how to do the "spoiler [show]" thing, so just know that my review will probably have Spoilers. Actually, so I don't have to say this everytime, would someone please teach me how?

 

Although I do enjoy undead based missions a fair bit, they are not my favorite kinds of missions. I prefer sneaking through cities, castles and manors and dealing with living humans the most. That being said, I still really enjoyed Glenham Tower.

 

The choice of ambient sounds was nice.

The falling beam on the outside of the tower, the collapsing floor and the zombies bursting in through the door were fun and scary surprises. At first I thought that a narrow tower that just spiraled down would be a boring level design, but each floor was fun to explore and the lower levels mixed it up. The enemy count vs items was well balanced. I do have to admit that I'm usually not stealthy with undead. I feel the need to vanquish undead. In this level I lured most of them to the floor with the dining table. From the safety of that blessed dining table I moved in for the attack then quickly backed away, taking advantage of their inability to climb onto the table and massacre me. I really enjoyed the story told through the readables. A good story really helps further enhance a good level. That's a big reason why I love the Thief games. Not being able to put the "sphere" into my inventory made it a little more interesting getting it to the acid. I enjoyed the challenge even though I fell into the water several times. The whole time that I was taking the sphere upstairs, I kept thinking, " Oh great Builder, please don't let the Lich Queen get me!" I thought that maybe she would spawn after I got the sphere.

 

I really enjoyed this level. I have played a few other levels by you, Sotha. I have not reviewed them yet, but I will. You are a very good level maker. I have beaten about 15 TDM levels now, and I realize that I need to let the level makers (and not just the mod developers) know that I am grateful to them for supplying me with hours of great fun.

 

Thanks again and keep up the good work!

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  • 4 weeks later...

Just finished this. I don't typically enjoy missions filled with undead but I didn't find it a big detractor in this mission.

 

 

The designs were really nice, especially the on fire guy. Stealth was very well designed and didn't give me really any issues from the actual design. I am glad you gave a way to clear the level of undead so you could search it. Overall very enjoyable and one of my favorites so far.

 

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  • 1 month later...

I played this mission with the standalone release. Was quite good, had a good evening.

 

Hiding in the closet felt like Amnesia, hehe.

 

 

What I think would have been really cool; When you destroyed the vessel and this killed the zombies. The fog actually made me think that the zombies got vaporized and their dust filled the rooms, making it really creepy, but empty. The lying corpses made it clear that this was not the case.

 

I think it would have been very atmospheric and a nice finish if the destruction of the zombies would turn them to dust and the dust would fill the rooms and douse the fires, so you end up in a building that is really dead and empty, suddenly in a split second no lights, no creatures inside it, just emptiness as if it was never real, like a bad dream you just woke up from and you walk through the hallways barely believing this was even real.

Edited by Psychomorph
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  • 2 weeks later...

I can say this was a very good FM. The only real downside for me is that it consists entirely of undead who annoy me a lot. But generally, it's a nice FM. :D

 

My experience...

 

In the room with the collapsing floor and the water below, I took the lever from the machine, it broke off and player said "Hmm...". I though: "Aha, there must be something to figure out here!". But it turned out there wasn't. That made me a bit disappointed.

 

As for the soul crystal, I took it and ran like mad, squeezed through the hole and fell back to the water, they couldn't reach in there. Climbed back up using rope arrow and continued going up. Thing that bothered me the most is that I had to drop it each time I wanted to open the door, like I don't have two hands.

 

Anyway, having them killed I was relieved that I can finally navigate without fear so I went towards the chasm to climb out using the wine cellar. While going back down I noticed that the front door was opened. So I was going to get out when the Leach Queen started chasing me. We did one lap inside the tower in order for me to get out. As I reached the front gate Objective Complete message started to appear and screen was going dark. At that moment she hit me, and killed. Error message appeared on my screen: "Unable to save. You must be alive to save." and my game crashed. I thought, great, now my save is probably corrupted, but it loaded fine giving me the screen with the statistics.

 

Now, I couldn't cope with the fact that she was still alive, so I loaded my quicksave and went to kill her. As she was chasing me around the tower, I dropped two mines I had. She missed the first one, but stepped on the second one and it killed her. Took the Smouldering Scroll from her, reading it put a smile on my face. I proceeded to the gate and these are my final stats.

 

pod5.th.jpg

 

 

Glitches I encountered...

 

While trying to find my way up I somehow managed to break the ledge from underneath and it fell on my head pushing in the wall.

 

x0t5.th.jpg

 

When I moved the book with a spoon on it, it made two bottles fall half-through the shelf.

 

2vl2.th.jpg

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Realy nice FM. Just one little thing:

 

 

 

I really liked that the zombies had items like books and scrolls and were "modified" with arrows and daggers. Also the burning lich/witch/hag was a nice idea but I would have used an other model for it. Something more witchy than a sceleton warrior would be nice. I know its a lot of work to make a nice model. Maybe at some time someone makes one ...

 

 

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Unfortunately, tables and the cauldron containing the acid allowed me to kill all the undead in the mission without getting killed

And that's unfortunate....??? Finding those areas where you can get them but they can't get you is about the only thing that makes undead missions playable for me (but I'm a total wuss when it comes to the undead). :smile:

 

If you haven't done it yet, play The Lich Queen's Demise. You can do the same thing but

 

there's no point cuz they just respawn.

 

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Amazing FM, I was very impressed. I especially liked the optional objective.

 

 

At first I was worried that my idea of taking the crystal to the acid near the start of the level wouldn't work (since it was a little elaborate), but you didn't disappoint. Props for the whole collapsible structure gimmick, it was very interesting although it basically forces the player to quick save constantly (which I luckily did). You may have wanted to design it so that the player didn't have to die if he made a mistake even though you did give a warning.

 

 

Anyway, this mission has very few flaws apart from that in my opinion.

Edited by Bridge
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Amazing FM, I was very impressed. I especially liked the optional objective.

 

 

At first I was worried that my idea of taking the crystal to the acid near the start of the level wouldn't work (since it was a little elaborate), but you didn't disappoint. Props for the whole collapsible structure gimmick, it was very interesting although it basically forces the player to quick save constantly (which I luckily did). You may have wanted to design it so that the player didn't have to die if he made a mistake even though you did give a warning.

 

 

Anyway, this mission has very few flaws apart from that in my opinion.

 

Yep, one of my favourite missions, even among Sotha's Thomas Porter series which is a set of top FMs. And the optional task is one reason indeed, I think the flaw you mentionned is not really one though (see below).

 

 

 

I liked the events with the collapses, and if I remember well when it collapses you don't lose health, you merely fall into water, so you can keep on and it's actually more interesting that way I think.

I also thought it was really smart to make a such an important & challenging objective optional, because it got me more involved doing it somehow, and also for the sequels. And anyway, most players would like to accomplish it ;) Also, what is worth noticing is that, despite the linearity of the plot (linear, but original since the climax is at the bottom, not the top as one would expect hearing the title), the story and the flow keep you thrilled.

However, I pulled two levers, one well hidden outside the tower, and the other somewhere inside, but I couldn't find what they were for !

 

 

Jared, is that you ?

Must be rats...

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Yep, one of my favourite missions, even among Sotha's Thomas Porter series which is a set of top FMs. And the optional task is one reason indeed, I think the flaw you mentionned is not really one though (see below).

 

 

 

I liked the events with the collapses, and if I remember well when it collapses you don't lose health, you merely fall into water, so you can keep on and it's actually more interesting that way I think.

I also thought it was really smart to make a such an important & challenging objective optional, because it got me more involved doing it somehow, and also for the sequels. And anyway, most players would like to accomplish it ;) Also, what is worth noticing is that, despite the linearity of the plot (linear, but original since the climax is at the bottom, not the top as one would expect hearing the title), the story and the flow keep you thrilled.

However, I pulled two levers, one well hidden outside the tower, and the other somewhere inside, but I couldn't find what they were for !

 

 

 

 

Yeah I didn't quite get what the purpose of the hidden lever was. Maybe it was carried over from an earlier version or something. Anyway, regarding the collapsing structures (once again):

 

I indeed agree that the falling planks near the end of the level were quite clever (though I quickloaded anyway). I'm mainly talking about the collapsing stone and wooden structures on the outside of the tower. After a certain point you began to expect the architecture to be quite perilous, so it was definitely not a *flaw* in the grand scheme of things, but the very first time it happens was incredibly unfair in my opinion. Even though the note mentions that it's dangerous there is no telegraphing whatsoever, which can be a good thing under the right circumstances, but in this case it basically meant that I jumped onto a stone ledge and fell to my death (sometimes I just fell to a ledge below and lost most of my health). It would have worked much better to set up a scripted event where that happens, which would give the player ample warning. Then I wouldn't have complained about the level design being unfair. It's a minor point in any case.

 

Edited by Bridge
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Ahem.. Thanks for playing and I'm glad you both enjoyed the mission.

 

 

 

IIRC, I deliberately made all the collapsing structures look worn, bent, or otherwise structurally unsafe. They should be identifiable just by looking.

Also one could check structural safety by shooting an arrow at the structures.

 

 

Clipper

-The mapper's best friend.

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Ahem.. Thanks for playing and I'm glad you both enjoyed the mission.

 

 

 

IIRC, I deliberately made all the collapsing structures look worn, bent, or otherwise structurally unsafe. They should be identifiable just by looking.

Also one could check structural safety by shooting an arrow at the structures.

 

 

 

 

Indeed, that is what I did from that point on, I'm referring exclusively to the first ledge. I checked and it is indeed somewhat crooked but it is quite dark and not immediately noticeable especially from the perspective the player is forced to view it from. It's idiotic to jump onto a ledge without checking whether it is safe first sure but I would be surprised if the majority of players didn't do exactly that.

 

 

But as I said, it's not major (although worth mentioning in my opinion).

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  • 2 weeks later...

Just finished this on difficult, getting all the loot and doing the optional objective.

Oh boy, this mission is just pure and unadulterated fun!

 

 

 

Map and gameplay: 10/10.

It has varied and enjoyable elements. Exploring, climbing, solving little puzzles, looting, reading, fighting the undead, fighting a goddamn flaming Lich and saving humanity from doom!!

When that stair collapsed, I took a hell of a fright. I did not see that coming!

The wooden planks collapsing was also very cool and realistic.

And there is some nice touches, as zombies with arrows and blades piercing them.

I also liked the blood stains and trails, as the paintings with blood in the eyes lol

 

Story: 10/10.

The story is just fantastic, The encounter of the Lich's lair is the best part IMHO, it's just so epic and evil. It reminded me of The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion.

And taking that blue flaming glass orb reminded me of the final confrontation with The Trickster in Thief: The Dark Project: http://static4.wikia...6/ConRitual.jpg

 

Readable materials quantity and quality: 10/10

Not much to say, it's just perfect and realistic. And I love the subject : necromancy, the undead, Lich. Just awesome.

Taking a scroll from the cold and undead hand of the guy who accidentally summoned the Lich was very cool.

As taking the diary from his servant. It was funny seeing him using the diary as a weapon xD

 

Loot: 10/10

It was a joy looting that place, there is a good variety of items to steal and places to look.

I especially liked the jewels disguised in the wall decorations, and looting the dining room. There was so much loot there! haha

Finding that secret place in Lord Morley's room was nice, as it had a very useful supply of arrows.

 

 

 

Verdict: 10/10

This mission had a very Thief: The Dark Project feeling, maybe that's because I enjoyed it so much.

It is probably my favorite The Dark Mod mission so far!

Thank you Sotha! :smile:

Edited by Jon Irenicus
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  • 1 month later...

What a great mission!

 

My favorite part was ...

 

 

... when I hid in a bathroom on the floor with bedrooms, and a zombie walked in, holding some bathroom read in its hand. You can't get better than that, I think! (The book it brought in was "Servant's journal," by the way, totally frobbable and stealable.)

 

 

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  • 3 months later...

Disclaimer: I haven’t played others in this series, so I can’t comment much on the story it’s a part of.

 

Wonderful level. I’ve enjoyed many fan missions immensely, but usually I have to include at least one small or mid-sized complaint to accompany the compliments. Not so with this level. It was a short level – so it may not go down as my absolute favorite – but it was immensely polished.

 

Fog looked amazing, the climb was an excellent use of the engine and not too difficult. The “scare” moments were handled well.

And the final showdown with the flaming revenant and company was magnificent. After my initial death, I realized just how tricky it would be to kill them all, and it really forces you to use your imagination and unload your arsenal to accomplish it. I know it can be ghosted, but clearing the room was more fun for me. Sandbox moments like that are what made the old Thief games great, and you recreated it wonderfully here.

 

 

I’m not a hero in Thief games...

After having some fun with the glowing artifact (I was so excited that it repelled zombies, so you could watch them flail at you just out of reach!), I chucked it in the pit behind the throne to see if it would be destroyed. No such luck, so I left it there.

Players in this thread that followed through with it seemed to really enjoy destroying it, so I may replay this mission eventually to complete that portion (and to get another crack at the “boss battle”)

Edited by Digi

"Fancy burricks are afraid of dogs, if they encounter each other the dog barks and the burricks poop." - Thief: Deadly Shadows Game Designer

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  • 5 months later...

I'm currently finishing this mission and I've really, really liked it so far. B) Good pacing, plenty of spookiness, challenging climbing puzzles outside and a tangible urge to conserve your ammo and special equipment for later. Very good mission. The only thing I dislike is that

you can only destroy the endgame artifact after carrying it around manually

. Given what enemies you're going against at that point, and their accumulated numbers, I find that optional objective to be borderline impossible to complete if you want to ghost all the way back. But all in all, excellent FM, Sotha ! :D

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Thanks for playing and commenting. Oh, and welcome to the forums!

 

Yep, that's why I put it optional: people can grab the extra challenge if they want to or feel confident enough.

 

I seldom take ghostability into account in my missions. I like to promote challenge and clever usage of tools, rather than making a path of darkness that the player can stroll through the mission. Sometimes it just is okay make a cheesy distraction, grab what you can and run like hell. ;)

 

 

 

IIRC the player can douse the artifact with a water arrow (or dipping it underwater), allowing discreet carrying... but only for a while.

 

 

Clipper

-The mapper's best friend.

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Thank you, but I already figured it out on my own right the other day. ;) My problem was that I completely forgot that I could try to douse that lamp hanging above the macguffin, then carry on with that little optional objective. :blush: Once I finally realised that, I've had no more problems, even if it was still a bit tricky to finish that sidequest.

 

All in all, I want to congratulate you to a fantastic little mission ! B) Well, "little" is a relative word here, as I found the whole manor a lot more spacious than I anticipated, and the atmosphere was tense and immersive enough to give me the feeling that I'm exploring a much, much larger place. :ph34r:

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  • 10 months later...

Solid mission with a good length and setting - I like the way the tower is made up and the overall atmosphere! Usually I am not that fan of

the undead setting and the used models bore me a bit already, because there are used so widely - seen in every undead-related mission ...

 

 

 

The "optional objective" (which in my point of view takes more than the mandatory objectives) was a good idea! I love sudden objectives and events - the collapsing effects are also quite unexpected and do their job well!

 

Finding out that you need the royal acid for destroying the sphere may take a while, especially if you have not paid that much attention to it.

 

 

 

It does not offer many additional components and the mission uses most of the well-known content from other maps. It could make more use of different models, voice acting and other components for a more vivid, unique playing experience.

 

Thank you for the map!

Edited by Silverd
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  • 2 weeks later...

 

 

I tried the switch in all three difficulties and the keg moved fine each time.

 

This was with 2.03.

 

I looked at the map and see no objects that are "middle difficulty" only, which I would have suspected of blocking the keg. Nothing out of the ordinary. Throw switch, keg moves. I stood in its way once, and it stopped, as it should. But throwing the switch again closed it and once more opened it all the way.

 

 

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