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Fan Mission: Volta II - Cauldron of the Gods by Kingsal (11/30/17) V2.2


kingsal
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  • 2 months later...

I just finished it and i must say that this is an amazing mod. The mod transpires professionalism. audio, music, attention to detail on building the environment. It was a pleasure playing it. The only thing that makes me sad is that since 2017 we don't have another Volta mission.

 

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Some feedback for Volta 1 and 2

Spoiler

 

As many others have said, both missions (especially the second one) are top-notch, commercial quality, professional-grade game. Both feature lots of custom assets. The second one is unprecedented in terms of artistic splendor. Only praise deserved overall, so I will be short and focus on things I felt were lacking.

Please take this as my personal opinion. Feel free to discard any points you don't agree. I don't usually post on older missions, but seemingly the two new parts are coming soon and I kinda share the general public agitation of those.

I played with notarget and cheat codes, as I always do on first run, as well as forced bright ambient.

In both missions I had the same problem, as in many of Biker's big missions: I got lost too easily. Evidently I must be lacking the focus and perception that missions like this require of player.

Volta 1. The circular mansion layout was the least confusing, but still. The corridors and pathways appear generic and oftentimes I had a hard time to choose which door to take and which side to go on a junction, even though I'd been there a number of times already.

Volta 2. The underground maze is the best Multiple Sclerosis simulator ever done in TDM. Most of the time I had absolutely no idea where I was and, even worse, where I want to be, not mentioning how I can get there. I've had my maps but even those were little help.

Loot-wise, I kinda understand the concept of rewarding the player for exploring the hard-to-get spots, but considering the size of the mission and especially the plot and objectives, do you really expect the player to pixel-hunt the entire premises? In general the loot distribution felt a little unnatural, as if someone (who?) had already looted the underground many times, leaving out only the most obscure places.

Gameplay-wise, it felt the least of the rescue-and-extract mission but if any, to settle and live there forever type, which, again, was confusing because of unrealized expectations.

The most frustrating part was that rare adventure excitement mood that the mission was putting me into in the beginning, that turned into "how do I end this thing?"

 

 

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@duzenko Thanks for the feedback. I recognize that both mission, especially Cauldron,  are probably too big and lack a certain focus. This is something I'm working on for future missions.  For the campaign Im reworking volta 1 and 2 to be leaner and  hopefully meaner.

Also I would recommend playing the missions without cheats on, they weren't really intended to be played that way :(.

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  • 8 months later...
On 12/3/2017 at 8:03 PM, kingsal said:

 

  Hide contents

The statues says, "Bring forth the remains of the burned priest". Ill make sure you can frob the statues again to hear what it says in an update. Sorry about that.

 

I found a

Spoiler

hand

to put on the tray. All I got were 2 extra spiders. Do I have to come with all the

Spoiler

parts of the priest

? I see a dead guy laying up on a shelf. Is that the

Spoiler

rest of the priest

? How do I get up there?

I'm also stuck in the octogon room with the tree or vines or whatever that is

Spoiler

(where you find the hand)

. How do I climb it to the next level?

Also, there's a cliff with a patroling apebeast with a torch. Shot it dead, but how do I get up over there?

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@Acolytesix All of the statues should spawn optional useful items. If it doesn't spawn something then this is a new bug.
 

For the statues:

Spoiler

One unique hand per statue is required. You do not need to bring any more parts of the priest other than the hands.

I don't know which areas you are trying to get to, but you can access every place the apebeasts can. Try using vine or rope arrows or just explore. You should be able to get there.

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On 12/26/2020 at 12:08 PM, duzenko said:

Some feedback for Volta 1 and 2

  Hide contents

I played with notarget and cheat codes, as I always do on first run, as well as forced bright ambient.

 

Not saying this is the main cause for you to get lost, but good lever designers, use light cues to indicate the player where he should go, by calling for his attention and by playing with forced bright ambient, perhaps you could be missing that important light cues.

Edited by HMart
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4 hours ago, HMart said:

Not saying this is the main cause for you to get lost, but good lever designers, use light cues to indicate the player where he should go, by calling for his attention and by playing with forced bright ambient, perhaps you could be missing that important light cues.

I also wondered why he was doing this and consequently I am not surprised if he has problems to understand the entire level design. After all, the placement of AI and lights fulfills the essential purpose of the game. Hm...

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Yeah if the lighting is too bright or too dark, some of the cues can get lost. Also the AI's patrols and the encounters slow the gameplay down and force the player to familiarize themselves with the area (in theory).


Although I still think I went a little too big and too complicated given the objective and intentions of this mission.

Some players dig these giant open underground missions and others don't. It was hard for me to find that balance, tbh. Looking back at it, I probably should have done more testing and got feedback earlier in the design process.. Lessons learned I guess :)

 

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13 hours ago, kingsal said:

Yeah if the lighting is too bright or too dark, some of the cues can get lost.

This is one of the reasons I dislike bright ambients; they can make the level look washed out. I've always preferred dark shadows with smaller, well-placed lights to break up the darkness. Even a few hacky volume lights with low luminosity and small radius can help draw attention to interesting areas.

{ 0 | 🞵 } = funk_tastic

My missions:           Stand-alone                                                      Duncan Lynch series                              

                                      Down and Out on Newford Road              the Factory Heist

                                                                                                  A House Call

                              

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20 hours ago, kingsal said:

Yeah if the lighting is too bright or too dark, some of the cues can get lost. Also the AI's patrols and the encounters slow the gameplay down and force the player to familiarize themselves with the area (in theory).


Although I still think I went a little too big and too complicated given the objective and intentions of this mission.

Some players dig these giant open underground missions and others don't. It was hard for me to find that balance, tbh. Looking back at it, I probably should have done more testing and got feedback earlier in the design process.. Lessons learned I guess :)

 

My three cents:

1. Volta 2 is a masterpiece for me.

2. I love the complexity, the atmosphere is fantastic and thus the mission deserves the attribute "TLE" (=Thief-Like-Experience)

3. I hope that your next missions will be similar in size, complexity and atmosphere!

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16 hours ago, JackFarmer said:

My three cents:

1. Volta 2 is a masterpiece for me.

2. I love the complexity, the atmosphere is fantastic and thus the mission deserves the attribute "TLE" (=Thief-Like-Experience)

Agreed. Both Volta-missions are some of the best TDM has. I'm not that big on tomb-raids or underground ruins, certainly not compared to mansions or cities, but Volta 2 was really fucking good.

17 hours ago, JackFarmer said:

3. I hope that your next missions will be similar in size, complexity and atmosphere!

Absolutely, love these big sprawling missions, especially when they're this well designed.

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Best of luck and happy mapping!

{ 0 | 🞵 } = funk_tastic

My missions:           Stand-alone                                                      Duncan Lynch series                              

                                      Down and Out on Newford Road              the Factory Heist

                                                                                                  A House Call

                              

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  • 2 weeks later...

I just registered this forum in order to give feedback. This mission is fantastic! I haven't played Thief in years, and this fan mission evoked the same kind of feelings I've had while playing the original. The Dark Mod is a remarkable in reproducing the feel so well. I'm so happy that one of the first mission I've played is this masterpiece. I haven't finished it yet, and also, I haven't played the 1st. Will get back.

Edit: I'm back; finished this. 4 secrets and 1214 lot. This was enjoyable until the end.

Edited by AlxKiri
finished
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  • 9 months later...

I just finished this (finally). Absolutely fantastic mission, I really enjoyed.

Spoiler

Lots of variety (city, underground ruins, crypt, pagan forest), and a nice "finish" to every section of the mission by adding a special task, like the sacrificial offerings, or the mission objective in the forest section. I also found that the placement and amount of enemies on expert difficulty was exceptionally good. Even though there were parts with quite a few enemies, it was always fair. 

The mission was very good to navigate, despite being gigantic. Probably testament to memorable architecture. 

The atmosphere is great, and, I especially liked the dark places like the lower crypts.

One thing I would criticize is the amount of readables. It would have been nice to understand a bit more about the underground civilization. I also found that the voice acting tended to be a bit on the silly side. Not so much with the manbeasts (they're supposed to be silly ;)), rather with the other characters. Also, like in VOlta I, the sound was a bit weird in some places, due to the reverb/whatever effect. Those are only minor niggles though.

I also had an issue with this rope, if you can recognize the place (it's in the forest part, towards the end):

TDM_Volta_II_rope.thumb.jpg.224587a3485fe91a79abd64a4e7c2dff.jpg

I had issues grabbing the wood at the top of the rope, and I was completely unable to climb down the rope (couldn't hang on to it, as I always fell too far from it to grab it while falling). Had to shoot a rope arrow, and jump onto the other rope, to grab the rope arrow from the wood.

All in all, as I said, great, great mission. One of my favorites, definitely. 

Edited by chakkman
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