Really lame pocket dimension

Discussion in 'Side Quests' started by Xazo-Tak, Jan 25, 2016.

  1. Xazo-Tak

    Xazo-Tak Void-Bound Voyager

    tl;dr: Don't have an exciting looking dungeon instakill the player with a platform-hopping section which really doesn't belong in this game

    I decided to try out the new version of Starbound having not played in ages, and after a while of delving underground playing in a cave-spelunker style (using minimal block removal/placement, and not spamming my path with torches) I came across a door to a "pocket dimension" or something.
    Turns out that rather than actually being anything cool, such as a really strange world to explore, it turned out just to be a parkour course. And because the movement system in this game is pretty terrible, I screw up the first jump and instadie, which caused me to sadquit the game even though I was having lots of fun up until that point since I like playing survival games as survival games not to mention that my adventure just got unfairly ended.

    I feel that this was just a lazy piece of content, as it ignored that Starbound's movement system just isn't fine enough to handle parkour but used it anyway because parkour (or anything based around dodging) is the easiest content you can make for a game.

    Starbound's movement system needs a rework for sure (I can't even walk off an ledge without catapulting myself off of it, let alone have my character appear to carefully climb down from the edge of said ledge) but even so, platform hopping with instakill for falling off really isn't fun. There is one way to pull off platform hopping properly though as a level element: have it so that if a jump is missed, the player falls into another section of the map that eventually reconnects with the main path.
    As an example of this, back when Happy Wheels was a thing I made a level where if the player fell from the platforms and survived the fall they would instead have to outrun a boulder, which was possible but still a challenge because they could only outrun it through manually controlled hopping.
    The new path could be challenging in other ways too, such as having enemies before the point where it rejoins the main path, or it could have blowdart traps requiring the player to jump and duck as every few steps another trap triggers; could be anything really from puzzles to maybe even just being a slower route, but it absolutely should not be more parkour, because if you end up on the second path due to being bad at Starbound parkour the last thing you want is more parkour.
  2. Oberic

    Oberic Spaceman Spiff

    There are only a couple of very difficult challenge portals. Most of them aren't that tough.

    Just bring some climbing ropes and 70% of the portals become trivial.

    The rewards are pretty great sometimes. And they're not all challenging.

    Like, the other day I found one with two glowing platforms, one had a white bunny and the other had a white cat.
    I went to the cat side door, and behind it got very specific rare loot.
    A white cat hat, literally a white cat to sit on my head.
    When I picked the cat side, the bunny side locked and the bunny fell in lava.. >.<

    Some of the challenges are just dodging traps to get through, some have combat, some have alternate paths. Some are simple puzzles (imo we need more complex puzzle challenges).
  3. Xazo-Tak

    Xazo-Tak Void-Bound Voyager

    I only remembered about the rope AFTER I died and got sent to my ship, and it'd be near impossible finding the portal again.
    But even then, it would have still been cheating my way through. So either the portal is difficult in an unfair way, or it's trivial, so parkour really needs to become less of a part of dungeons.
  4. Gilligan Lanley

    Gilligan Lanley Space Kumquat

    I think ropes/grappling hooks should be disabled in Challenge Dungeons. It makes any of the platforming dungeons trivial. I do agree that the dungeons are rather unforgiving for not being used to controlling the movement scheme in-game, I think that for the most part it's fair once you've gained a good feel for the controls. On the other side of the arguement, it's additional content that you don't have to do. But at the same time it needs to hold up to its name: A Challenge Dungeon. Usually a name like that would entail a struggle. It's not really a "cheap" move as any/all of the traps have rather obvious trigger spots/placements. Unless it doesn't matter if you see it or not and it still manages to kill you (I'm looking at you Souls/Bloodborne).

    Another gripe would be the rewards. The only things note-worthy would be some neat vanity items and Upgrade/Modules. The weapons are usually... okay at best. The crafted teir weapons are generally better as they have really good base damage. The hidden chests; the ones you usually need the morphball to reach, are just as lackluster.
  5. Xazo-Tak

    Xazo-Tak Void-Bound Voyager

    It's additional content that I don't have to do, but it's additional content that I want to do.
    So if the dungeon is ruined for me by requiring me to have mastered a terrible controls system just so I don't get instakilled.
    In fact, unless a game is very good at employing close shaves, it's very bad for it to contain instakills, since a game that balances difficulty well creates fun by not being so easy that the player breezes through without a scratch or close call, but not getting the player killed as soon as they make a mistake and instead creating a situation where they have to do some quick thinking to survive.
    A good game needs to have the player alternate between states of "safe" and "screwed". Kind of like how the ghosts in Pacman are programmed to run away every now and then, which was the earliest employment of this technique of adding fun to a game.
    It's not an easy technique to employ in more elaborate games, but it is very easy to have a player failing the parkour dropped into a harder section of the dungeon.
  6. lazarus78

    lazarus78 The Waste of Time

    If platforming doesnt belong in a side scroller game, then shooting doesn't belong in a first person shooter.

    The dungeons are trivial and the movement system is fine. If you want to do them, then guess what, you get to do some platforming. If you don't want to platform, then you can hop right out of the dungeon and move on your way. Simple as that.
    kinnyth likes this.
  7. Zebe

    Zebe Space Kumquat

    This is really a matter of opinion. Personally I feel most of the challenge rooms are ridiculously easy. Basically they are really simple: move when there is no danger, jump over this pit of danger, don't touch that object of danger, and get loot at the end.
    The movement system is not tough "to master". It just requires some practice to learn to control jumps etc. However the difficulty is a personal thing, so I can't say it's "easy for everyone" or anything. But I don't think it's a good reason to blame the game for being too difficult. The dungeons are certainly possible to beat in one try without any prior practice in the specific dungeon.
    lazarus78 likes this.
  8. Xazo-Tak

    Xazo-Tak Void-Bound Voyager

    This is a survival-adventure game primarily, and it is implimented as a platformer.
    Preventing the former due to the poor controls system causing forced cases of the latter to dominate is definitely spitting in the face of players who loathe parkour in games.
    Pocket dimensions are a neat idea, even if I would have implemented them differently.
  9. lazarus78

    lazarus78 The Waste of Time

    Where are you getting the idea it is a survival-adventure game? Survival is/will be entirely optional.

    Doesn't matter what you would have done. The devs are doing it their way. You either adapt, skip, or move along to another game.
    endertrot likes this.
  10. Xazo-Tak

    Xazo-Tak Void-Bound Voyager

    Huh, turns out that other forums weren't kidding when they complained about this forum saying "people there will and are expected to defend everything Chucklefish does".
  11. lazarus78

    lazarus78 The Waste of Time

    And pulling the "you are just a fanboy" card isn't exactly helping you either.

    I agree with most of their decisions. Simple as that. You are free to disagree, but that does not abstain you from criticism if you post about it.
    Jaxatron and endertrot like this.

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