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Fan Mission: Now and Then by joebarnin (2020/09/08)


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Very nice. Just got through first play through (missed many things, but will return).

Spoiler
  • Someone already mentioned about dropping keys and I agree... I like to leave the keys with the owner :) and it keeps the keyring less cluttered.
  • After the cutscene where you find the guards are at your apartment, I decided to go to the Builder's building (I had not gone at all previous to the cutscene).  When opening the front door after unlocking, the game crashes.  I went back to an earlier save game, and I could explore the Builder's area fine.

 

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A famous painting is on display at the local museum. Steal it, of course!   Title: Now and Then Filename : nowandthen.pk4 (download) Author: joebarnin Date of release: 08 Sept

Well with a well respected builder visiting I thought it fitting that the first thing he would see walking in would be that lol. Someone's head is going to roll!

I've been on an FM binging spree - think I've gone through 40+ in the past month and a half or so - and this one is probably in my top 5. Due to a couple of issues I had to restart the mission tw

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54 minutes ago, Sneaker said:

Very nice. Just got through first play through (missed many things, but will return).

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  • After the cutscene where you find the guards are at your apartment, I decided to go to the Builder's building (I had not gone at all previous to the cutscene).  When opening the front door after unlocking, the game crashes.  I went back to an earlier save game, and I could explore the Builder's area fine.

 

Hmm. Were there any error messages, or just a crash to desktop? Do you have logging configured so that you get a qconsole.log file (in \fms\nowandthen)?

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2 hours ago, joebarnin said:

Shhh. You weren't supposed to notice that. 😁

 

There is some dodgy construction going on. 🙄 Land developers these days, no eye for quality just in a rush to get it built fast and cheap: 

Spoiler

Eli's room downstairs has the ghost of a doorframe from outside

 

Edited by MrMunkeepants
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It is a seg fault that crashes to desktop (fedora 32)... here's the backtrace without the symbols (but maybe someone has that debuginfo?):

Spoiler

Thread 1 "thedarkmod.x64" received signal SIGSEGV, Segmentation fault.
0x0000000000543787 in ?? ()
Missing separate debuginfos, use: dnf debuginfo-install alsa-lib-1.2.3.2-1.fc32.x86_64 alsa-plugins-pulseaudio-1.2.2-1.fc32.x86_64 dbus-libs-1.12.20-1.fc32.x86_64 e--Type <RET> for more, q to quit, c to continue without paging--
lfutils-libelf-0.181-1.fc32.x86_64 expat-2.2.8-2.fc32.x86_64 flac-libs-1.3.3-2.fc32.x86_64 gsm-1.0.18-6.fc32.x86_64 libICE-1.0.10-3.fc32.x86_64 libSM-1.2.3-5.fc32.x86_64 libX11-1.6.12-1.fc32.x86_64 libX11-xcb-1.6.12-1.fc32.x86_64 libXau-1.0.9-3.fc32.x86_64 libXcursor-1.2.0-2.fc32.x86_64 libXdamage-1.1.5-2.fc32.x86_64 libXext-1.3.4-3.fc32.x86_64 libXfixes-5.0.3-11.fc32.x86_64 libXi-1.7.10-3.fc32.x86_64 libXrender-0.9.10-11.fc32.x86_64 libXtst-1.2.3-11.fc32.x86_64 libXxf86vm-1.1.4-13.fc32.x86_64 libasyncns-0.8-18.fc32.x86_64 libcap-2.26-7.fc32.x86_64 libdrm-2.4.102-1.fc32.x86_64 libedit-3.1-32.20191231cvs.fc32.x86_64 libffi-3.1-24.fc32.x86_64 libgcrypt-1.8.5-3.fc32.x86_64 libglvnd-1.3.2-1.fc32.x86_64 libglvnd-glx-1.3.2-1.fc32.x86_64 libgpg-error-1.36-3.fc32.x86_64 libogg-1.3.4-2.fc32.x86_64 libsndfile-1.0.28-12.fc32.x86_64 libstdc++-10.2.1-1.fc32.x86_64 libuuid-2.35.2-1.fc32.x86_64 libvorbis-1.3.6-6.fc32.x86_64 libxcb-1.13.1-4.fc32.x86_64 libxshmfence-1.3-6.fc32.x86_64 llvm-libs-10.0.1-2.fc32.x86_64 lz4-libs-1.9.1-2.fc32.x86_64 mesa-dri-drivers-20.1.7-1.fc32.x86_64 mesa-libGL-20.1.7-1.fc32.x86_64 mesa-libglapi-20.1.7-1.fc32.x86_64 pcre2-10.35-4.fc32.x86_64 pulseaudio-libs-13.99.1-4.fc32.x86_64 sssd-client-2.3.1-2.fc32.x86_64 systemd-libs-245.7-1.fc32.x86_64 xz-libs-5.2.5-1.fc32.x86_64
(gdb) bt
#0  0x0000000000543787 in ?? ()
#1  0x00000000009f6c89 in ?? ()
#2  0x0000000000a030ea in ?? ()
#3  0x00000000005ceed1 in ?? ()
#4  0x00000000004fd74a in ?? ()
#5  0x00000000004ff65d in ?? ()
#6  0x00000000007b51cd in ?? ()
#7  0x00000000004f8e8c in ?? ()
#8  0x00000000004aa0ca in ?? ()
#9  0x000000000046ff9d in ?? ()
#10 0x00007ffff7b33042 in __libc_start_main () from /lib64/libc.so.6
#11 0x0000000000470949 in ?? ()

 

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Great mission joebarnindsds! Was a bit dark to see some stuff but I think that was more due to the update to 2.08 and it changing the gamma to the point where some extra fine-tuning was needed

Edited by Xolvix
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*I've completed all the main objectives but one: find a clue. I found the item it will point me to, but I still need a hint 🙄

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I missed Addison's safe the first time around, so I went back; reading that note didn't complete the objective. Maybe doing it in the wrong order broke something? The pages make 'boop' sounds as I flip back and forth.

*I got two "discoverable" objectives and completed them: 

Spoiler

the ring and the bust.

What is the third?

*I know I missed some things in the Builders' admin building and need pointers:

Spoiler

the code for the hammer, and whatever inter-office listening device opened up (I heard the noise, but couldn't find anything).

 

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Okay, finally found time to finish it, and the last part was the best!

Spoiler

It was really neat seeing the rooms of the mansion, formerly empty and smashed, given enough context to identify them, and I loved the little details like the note on the history of the place changing after you steal the painting (I actually went back a couple times to see what it would do depending on who I knocked out/killed, and it looks like it gets messed up in certain configurations and cuts off, but the idea is great) and the new paintings the museum has to replace Now and Then since it was now never discovered. The bodies of the former painting thieves and their note even vanish from the bunker, which is great attention to detail. I love the whole time travel thing, and I could easily see a future level or two built around this idea. I hope someone does!

Ended with only 7 of 11 secrets, but after cheating and finding the remainders, I think 8 would have been the absolute maximum I'd ever have discovered- some of them were practically impossible to spot! Anyway, aside from the tedious frustration when I couldn't find the clue I needed as mentioned earlier, I enjoyed it a lot. It does an amazing amount in a relatively small space.

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@MrMunkeepants

10 hours ago, MrMunkeepants said:
Spoiler

I missed Addison's safe the first time around, so I went back; reading that note didn't complete the objective. Maybe doing it in the wrong order broke something? The pages make 'boop' sounds as I flip back and forth.

Spoiler

It could be that doing things in the wrong order causes 'hanging' objectives. I had put in logic to deal with that, but perhaps there are paths that still cause problems. Luckily, that objective isn't mandatory, so you can finish without it. (Just thought - try reading all the way to page 4 of Addison's note).

 

 

10 hours ago, MrMunkeepants said:

What is the third?

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You have to read two different journals.

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Eloise

and

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Antioch (Builder)

 

 

10 hours ago, MrMunkeepants said:
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the code for the hammer, and whatever inter-office listening device opened up (I heard the noise, but couldn't find anything).

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They are related.

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Frobbing the book on the shelf unlocks the globe, so do one and then the other. Then,

Spoiler

move the brick to get a view into the office, then

Spoiler

use the spyglass to get the code.

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by joebarnin
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Thanks for the pointers! Somehow I still missed 1500g; I had a great time finding how all the discreet areas were connected (peeking through windows, grates, etc)

So often the scrolls are just props, I guess I forgot to look at that one.

Having a double-trigger for a secret is fiendish!

Is the music on the West side custom? I found it distractingly contemporary.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Congrats on creating such an interesting, complex mission in which one has to read all to proceed! 🙂

Unfortunately, I'm stuck in a point of no return now  I entered the Eastward Storage - door on the right, next to the stone stairs in the city - went through the shaft with rusted flap doors, got out and landed on the roof. Went along it and...I'm in a place I can't go back from. You can see some nobles walking down the streets here and...Help? 😉
All I can do now is to start the mission again. Not a big deal, so just to let you know. 🙂

It seems that I landed on the other side of the closed gate - on the other end of the street (Alred Street?) from the starting point. Screenshots where I am - below. 
 

alred street.jpg

2 (2).jpg

5.jpg

Edited by Mezla
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You can use the 'noclip' console command to get back into the "real world".  It will allow you to go through that fence and back into playable area. Here's how to use console commands: https://wiki.thedarkmod.com/index.php?title=Console_Useful_Controls

  1. walk up to the fence
  2. use the console to 'noclip'
  3. walk through the fence to the playable area
  4. use the console to 'noclip' again (this turns it off)

I'll investigate how this happened in the first place.

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joebarnin, thanks a lot! 🙂 I've just finish the misssion from the beginning. And that was a pleasure, sir! 🙂

I'd like to add that

 

Spoiler

the switch-to-win mini play to find one more secret was one of my fav moments. 🙂 
And similarly to one of the colleagues, I put the pagan artefact on the display, too.
I found notes of different items, pieces of loot for a player, but significant paillettes 😉 for in-game characters touching and amusing. Bravo!

 

I didn't find all of the loot though, so will replay gladly.
Please, create more fan missions! 👍

 

Edited by Mezla
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I played for a while, but eventually gave up because with every single guard helmeted this began to feel like a "forced ghost" (no knockouts) mission which is a style I don't personally enjoy. I won't rule out coming back to it at some point however, if I feel like a challenge.

Feedback based on what I did see:

  • While it was thrilling to hear somebody actually use my ambient music, I did wonder if you perhaps used too many different ambients. With a different one in almost every room there was a bit of "mood whiplash". I'd probably tone down the variety a little: maybe one ambient for the streets, another for all rooms off the streets, another for the museum etc.
  • The architecture was nice, although I'd suggest giving rooms a whole number of wood panels (some of them were half cut off by walls).
  • Having a mixture of frobbable and non-frobbable doors which look almost identical is frustrating, and forces you to potentially expose yourself just to discover that a door is purely decorative. I would suggest clearly distinguishing the two varieties, as the original Thief games did.
  • I really liked the storage rooms with lots of spare lamps and stuff. Something believable that I've never seen in a mission before.
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Well that was creative.

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I was expecting a traditional "get-in-there-and-grab-stuff" mission, perhaps with a twist of the "thing" being moved, since I found a note pertaining to it early, but the time travel concept was really cool. Almost like one of those missions where you first case the joint and then come back later.  Really fun way to switch things up. Also having the history document change based on what you did in the past was a neat idea.

I also did things in quite a wack order. First I found the underground bunker with the skeletons and the note. Then I found the time machine and then finally went to the museum.  But it all worked fine and gave a bit of a preview for what was to come.

The ambient music was cool, although I'm not sure it was always appropriate.

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Namely talking about the time machine house. If it were a horror mission, or at least ambiguous, I'd have been shitting my pants. But since it was just dumbass thugs, it felt a little out of place.

As for some objectives.

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Just from storytelling perspective, I found it a little odd that we would straight up steal the ring for the guy. He seemed like an upstanding fellow, considering he wrote about saving up money for it, so I'm not sure if he would be like "sweet, I'll take it", if the ring suddenly materialized at his bedside.

Now the pawnbroker, I'm sure he was very happy to have the bust out of nothing, no questions asked.

I think I found like 3 or 4 secrets, and 3300 or so loot, quite a bit that I missed. There was one door I couldn't figure out how to open and the museum's basement had the safe with the missing key. Did not stumble upon the guard's house apparently, or if I did I didn't find the key, so I knowingly let some stuff undone. May go back to run around a bit more later.

I didn't read the whole thread again, but I may have discovered a bug.

Spoiler

You can open the combination-locked case storing the golden hammer by literally running into the door. No joke, I opened it by accident when I had my back turned to it and I was fiddling with the movable boxes next to it. It's not even one of those cosmic ray bugs, it's 100% reproducible.

In case you want to test it, you have to kind of graze it by running from left to right, instead of dead-on. Once it's open, you can close it by simply pushing it shut.

Very enjoyable mission, with some really novel ideas, which is always great to see after having played all the others. Good job.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thanks for this great mission. I really enjoyed it! 

One question regarding the story:

Spoiler

When coming back to the present, everything changes according to the fact that "Now and Then" was never found. 

However, the "Thief's journal" (written by that other guy that also wanted to steal the painting) doesn't change, and it still talks about stealing "Now and Then". Is this something you missed or is this part of the story? Are we (the MC) somehow connected to this thief?

 

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The Dark Mod Database: https://tdmdb.com

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6 hours ago, darksilence said:

Thanks for this great mission. I really enjoyed it! 

One question regarding the story:

  Reveal hidden contents

When coming back to the present, everything changes according to the fact that "Now and Then" was never found. 

However, the "Thief's journal" (written by that other guy that also wanted to steal the painting) doesn't change, and it still talks about stealing "Now and Then". Is this something you missed or is this part of the story? Are we (the MC) somehow connected to this thief?

 

Spoiler

That was something I missed - the journal should change. There's actually another document (a note on Addison's desk) that needs to be updated as well. Plus, someone figured out that you can knock out and shoulder one of the people in the mansion, and then carry them back to the future, which should change the readables too. So I've got some work to do for version 2!

 

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Congrats, joebarnin, this is not your first mission and one can see all the experience you applied from your previous missions - well designed, fresh, with lots of interesting ideas.

SInce many before me already said what was good and bad + I am lazy today and don´´ want to write much, I  will just say:

Spoiler

I really liked the fresh take on the peeping-tom "mechanic", that was great!

Also all the flats were well done - player always knows where is he and where the other flat, which is mentioned in the readables, is and there are enough subtle hints about the secret switches.

Though I have to say, I had to noclip to 2 of them - both in the Hammerite cathedral, one up on the roofbeam, the second on the light - how were the player supposed to know they are there?

The only reason I found them was because I have the "highlight loot" button bound, otherwise I would have never found them, since they are not mentioned anywhere + pretty invisible.

Also the travel back to past - was that inspired by Back to the Future movies? Because I would say it was, even down to the diction and vocabulary used by the inventor himself in the readable!

I thought it was clever homage, only to read here, it is probably not so?

 

Also, one other thing: player should not be able to tinker with the date setup on the time-travel machine, as this might disrupt the time continuum - I was able to set a different date on the machine, only to end up again in the future where I came from, which doesn´t make sense.

 

When the player can´t use the date settings in the future, because the machine is broke down, that make sense.

But player shouldn´t be able to do that even in the past, when the machine is functional - player voice should stop himself from changing the date, warning him about the repercussions, in the similar way as when the protagonist stops you from returning to the future without the picture, when you try to frob the lever on the time-machine.

 

Congrats again, this was a blast to play! :)

Edited by Tarhiel
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@Tarhiel

Thanks, glad you enjoyed it!

Spoiler

 

The loot in the cathedral, up in the beams, had a little bit of glow to it, so if you looked up from the floor you might see it. The loot in the light was devious and unfair, I admit. It was a reward for getting up on the wainscoting and walking all the way around (something I didn't realize was possible until a beta tester did it). There was no way to know loot was there, and no logical reason for it to be there. When I play TDM missions, I'm lousy at finding the secrets; this was my revenge 😉

Not specifically inspired by Back to the Future, but the same idea - you go back, make changes, and it affects the future (to some extent). I didn't intentionally write Clifton to sound like Doc Brown or anyone in particular.

I agree about the time machine date issue. I'll change it so that the time machine in the past will have the date set to the "back to the future" date, and be unchangeable. Another thing for version 2.

 

 

 

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The game keeps crashing during/shortly after the video sequenze where it shows the city watch has located your hiding place.

I tried to proceed from different save games. I reinstalled the mission and  also updated "the dark mod". Nothing seems to help.

Could someone help out ?

EDIT:

I was able to fix this problem now by deleting and reinstalling the entire game.(I saved a backup of the fms folder of course)

Possibly it was just corrupted game data caused by my ailing hard disk, but has had nothing to do with this mission at all.

By the way, I enjoyed this mission very much. Very well done ! ;)👍

 

Edited by ^^artin
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  • 2 weeks later...

Well done Joebarnin for an absolute top class Thief mission! I'm stuck though :(

I am at a standstill with progress as I seem to keep going in circles now. I've found the song verses in the abandoned house and then figured out the code from it but I have no idea where to use it. I'm losing my mind cycling through all the houses and trying windows etc.

I'll take a break for now I think.. just wanted to say that so far the quality of your mission has left me very impressed! 

Anyhows, thank you for the time and superb effort you put in for this!

*Edit* Found where to use the combo and am rolling along again now - hurrah!

 

Edited by mango777
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First of all, congrats on the release of this mission. Have to say I really enjoyed the hunt. (Okay - a couple of times my head was going in circles lol, but more my fault than anything) lol I really love the added objectives and secrets - really extends the mission for me. 
 

Spoiler

I found the atmosphere was great with just the right lighting. Your past and current version of the Clifton house was well done. The clues were good - got me to the area I needed to be and liked that there was many ways to different areas. Some of your secrets were trying their hardest to hide, but found them all (eventually). I almost missed the other paintings but noticed the Addison note changed, so went and checked if anything else had and the rest was history. 

I have to ask though, in the kitchen of the Clifton house in the past, there are two extra switches on the wall - what do they do? I tried searching in vain for something they activated but couldn't find anything. I noticed in current version of the house they aren't there. Just wondering. 

Thanks again for all your hard work and I look forward to more from you. 

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2 hours ago, Thiefette said:
Spoiler

I have to ask though, in the kitchen of the Clifton house in the past, there are two extra switches on the wall - what do they do? I tried searching in vain for something they activated but couldn't find anything. I noticed in current version of the house they aren't there. Just wondering. 

 

Spoiler

Oh crud, those were switches I put in for testing purposes, that I forgot to remove! Sorry you wasted time on them!

 

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