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Ion Fury  "formerly Ion Maiden, launching August 15!"

User is online   Aleks 

#3961

All this discussion here made me wanna replay Ion Fury with that knowledge and see if I can spot some actually significant differences in each mapper's style. I played it right when it came like a year ago and haven't really replayed since, so it's all a bit blurry for me right now (had to do some mind gymnastics to actually remember which level was z4a4 for example). Also having refreshed my experience with Mapster after long years of practically not using it, I'll appreciate all these little effects more I suppose (not that I haven't so far - jukebox was actually one of the more memorable details).

BTW, MetHy = MetHunter? https://forums.duke4.net/public/style_emoticons/default/ohmy.gif I remember long time ago when he didn't touch Build/Mapster at all (but was damn good at dukematches in early DukesterX times) - now that's some suprise he turned pro!
1

User is offline   MrFlibble 

#3962

View Postoasiz, on 14 September 2020 - 12:41 PM, said:

This is not to say that I had to really fix other mappers work or anything as they do excellent work and easily surpass mine in areas, it was more about getting more cool shit in and perhaps spot any inconsistencies and to help with filling any gaps.

I think that's rather close to the role of a publication editor in that it is aimed at making individual parts into a consistent whole.

View PostMetHy, on 15 September 2020 - 12:32 AM, said:

In order to get a good idea of the before/after one could look at very early development screenshots that were shared on social media, there is at least one screenshot of each of the early versions of the two outdoor areas I mentionned (I'm thinking of the screenshot with the waterfall and the one with the red truck in the background specifically) and maybe more.

I've had a lot of trouble catching up with the pre-release screenshots, would be nice if they were collected in a single place somewhere because I think some early shots are buried in several threads here, and as for stuff like Twitter I have no idea how to successfully find something there at all.

View PostAleks, on 15 September 2020 - 02:46 AM, said:

see if I can spot some actually significant differences in each mapper's style

I think the style change from Z1+2 to Z3 is very strongly felt no mater how you play this.
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User is online   Aleks 

#3963

View PostMrFlibble, on 15 September 2020 - 03:53 AM, said:

I think the style change from Z1+2 to Z3 is very strongly felt no mater how you play this.


The theme was changing a lot during the campaign, but dunno about the style. Actually transition between Z2 and Z3 felt quite smooth to me - in fact now that I think of it, first level of Z2 with military base had a larger style change feeling to me to Z1 levels despite that both are made by Davox. Heskel's house level also seemed strongly different in style than the rest of the game, but that might be due to more unique theme.

In general, I think it's a lot better when the game follows a single, consistent and hardly distinguishable style pattern between many mappers. But I've felt the same for Duke 3D - I could never tell which maps were made by Blum or Levelord without checking and only started noticing their "style" when I've really given it some thought.
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User is offline   MrFlibble 

#3964

View PostAleks, on 16 September 2020 - 07:09 AM, said:

The theme was changing a lot during the campaign, but dunno about the style. Actually transition between Z2 and Z3 felt quite smooth to me - in fact now that I think of it, first level of Z2 with military base had a larger style change feeling to me to Z1 levels despite that both are made by Davox.

I can only speak for myself, but I had a very strong feeling that Z3 is a lot closer to the Duke3D style of mapping (and consequently, gameplay dynamics) than the previous levels. Also Davox seems to be very fond of secrets where you need to make those directional jumps around corners, as well as of large, sprawling areas.

I've got a couple of general questions about gameplay mechanics. First off, the bowling bomb. In the primary fire mode, if used without any delay, they seem to not home on enemies at all, unlike the preview campaign (IIRC), and only explode on direct contact. If a bomb thrown with a delay, it tracks enemies and will home in on them even around corners when they're not seen by the player. But what does the time of the delay affect? Does it make homing more reliable, or simply affects the distance at which the bomb is thrown, or both?

The second question is about jumping. Here's an area in D.C. Meltdown:
Attached File  capt0017.png (231.66K)
Number of downloads: 10
If I simply jump via space I cannot get to the floor above me. But if I jump and then hit crouch -- as if I wanted to land on top of the blue drawers -- I somehow get to the above floor. Is there some kind of (reverse) crouch-jump or something that I'm not aware of? I don't remember having this issue in the preview campaign, IIRC I could jump there without pressing anything expect space. But I'm not sure.

Also I discovered that in Alphabet Soup, it is possible to climb the orange pillars at the entrance, even though I believe the player is not supposed to do that (e.g. D.C. Meltdown has several much less steeply inclined pillars but you can't climb them.
Attached File  capt0021.png (297.33K)
Number of downloads: 22
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User is offline   jkas789 

#3965

View PostMrFlibble, on 21 September 2020 - 08:29 AM, said:


If I simply jump via space I cannot get to the floor above me. But if I jump and then hit crouch -- as if I wanted to land on top of the blue drawers -- I somehow get to the above floor. Is there some kind of (reverse) crouch-jump or something that I'm not aware of? I don't remember having this issue in the preview campaign, IIRC I could jump there without pressing anything expect space. But I'm not sure.


I believe that is a bug that was there from the start and was kept because speedrunners where using it? Also it apparently was buffed. Here is what I have gathered from the Ion Fury channel on the 3D Realms Discord:

  • "keep in mind that the height Shelly crouch jumps at is a little higher in later versions of the game than it was early on. When the game first came out, some of those secrets required jumping off chairs or enemies to reach, but crouch jumping was buffed shortly after launch so some secrets are a little easier to get that way now."

  • "fun fact: the height Shelly crouch jumps at was actually changed by accident. I don't know what changes actually caused it but basically collision was really messed up in version 1.02."

  • "the collision glitches were fixed in 1.1 but they kept the height she crouch jumps at, so some jumps are easier to make now than they were in 1.0"

  • In version 1.02, there was a huge problem with sprite collision. You could walk into a sprite and it would do all sorts of crazy things. For example, the wall to your left at the very start of the game would be very glitchy if you walked into it. It was crazy. But 1.1 overhauled the way sprite collision works so they're way more stable now. The downside is that it made some crouch jumps a little harder, but overall, I like the way it feels now the best.


EDIT: I don't know if any of this is actually true, so we will have to wait and see if any of the devs confirms/denies it.

This post has been edited by jkas789: 21 September 2020 - 09:21 AM

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User is offline   MrFlibble 

#3966

The odd thing is that crouch jumping does not work like I'd expect it -- first crouch, then jump higher (e.g. like the Predator jumps in Aliens versus Predator 2). I wouldn't discover this had I not actually tried to crouch under the ceiling to get atop of the blue drawer.

BTW, also in D.C. Meltdown, that hidden-in-plain-sight secret with the medipack, I can't get ahold of making that jump around the pillar. It takes about half a dozen tries to get it right, as I either don't jump high enough or overjump the green platform and fall off. Am I doing this wrong or is it really that awkward?

We need to start compiling an IF FAQ :)

This post has been edited by MrFlibble: 21 September 2020 - 11:52 AM

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User is offline   Hank 

#3967

I think this is work in progress, for Ion Fury 2 ...
https://i.imgur.com/KirAmZG.jpg
from
https://twitter.com/...482806533140481

This post has been edited by Hank: 22 September 2020 - 06:33 PM

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User is offline   cybdmn 

#3968

View PostHank, on 22 September 2020 - 06:32 PM, said:

I think this is work in progress, for Ion Fury 2 ...


Nope. As you can see in the twitter post its work in progress for Supplice, a Doom megawad in the works for some years now. What it shares with Ion Fury is that textures and sprites are made by Cage.
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User is offline   Hank 

#3969

All I read is Davox’s comments "Ion Fury Artist". Never heard of Supplice.
Oh, well, I ain’t on Twitter nor Discord, to ask them first, my apologies for jumping the gun. :)

This post has been edited by Hank: 23 September 2020 - 06:22 AM

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User is offline   Player Lin 

#3970

View Postcybdmn, on 22 September 2020 - 09:04 PM, said:

Nope. As you can see in the twitter post its work in progress for Supplice, a Doom megawad in the works for some years now. What it shares with Ion Fury is that textures and sprites are made by Cage.


For those who don't know about Supplice. https://forum.zdoom....hp?f=19&t=34856

BTW, Cage said the project will become a standalone game.

This post has been edited by Player Lin: 23 September 2020 - 07:21 AM

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User is offline   MrFlibble 

#3971

View PostPlayer Lin, on 23 September 2020 - 07:21 AM, said:


AW YISS
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User is offline   MrFlibble 

#3972

So hidden Easter eggs do not count as secret areas, or did I get this wrong?

Also, where can I find the official names for the enemies?
Attached File  blake-stone-help.png (15.11K)
Number of downloads: 33
I'm kinda missing this sort of feature in the game (yeah I know no Build engine game has it but still).
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User is offline   oasiz 

  • Dr. Effector

#3973

Enemy names are something you can ask each dev and get a different answer.
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User is online   necroslut 

#3974

View PostMrFlibble, on 25 September 2020 - 10:03 AM, said:

I'm kinda missing this sort of feature in the game (yeah I know no Build engine game has it but still).

Ion Maiden at least has the help screen -- that's already more than most these days. I'm constantly baffled by how many indie game ship without any kind of documentation whatsoever, not even a readme.txt.

Some basic documentation really requires so little effort -- much less than a tutorial or hint system -- and can often be more useful. Say if you put a game down for a while and pick it up again six months later, you might have forgotten how to do some moves or even that you can. Replaying the tutorial takes relatively long time, and a lot of times will even overwrite your save and stuff like that, while glancing over a help screen or readme often only takes a couple of seconds.
And that doesn't even cover all the other stuff you can put in there, like system requirements/tech specs, credits, contact information, links, FAQs etc.
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User is offline   oasiz 

  • Dr. Effector

#3975

You shouldn't be reading system requirements inside the game once you have bought the game and are running it :)

Credits I've seen plenty, especially once you beat the game. Credits on main menu are not something I've at least come to expect from games as a large majority of games (incl. AAA) don't even provide it.

If you're looking for a readme.txt then the time for those outside of utility programs/etc.. has kind of passed.
It made sense 15 years ago when an internet connection was not so common and your best bet was to contact customer support even by phone in case of issues.
For an indie dev to provide links is a bit strange since you can just use search engines and most you provide will end up being outdated and floating with every copy from there on.
If you run in to issues or have questions, you just return to where you bought the game, there is a VERY high change that you either bought a digital copy or bought it online anyway so you know where to go anyway.
Also remember that many indie games do not initially have a real community & test results before release, they are smaller teams and unfortunately can't afford QA.
This means that any FAQ stuff is most likely something that can only be filled properly post-release.
You no longer need to do a rather system specific TSR / memory / driver dance just to get a very big game working, most games just work.

Basic guides I can agree with, it only needs to be a single screen and I've seen many provide a quick visual keyboard / mouse + labels on them.
Reality is that many just end up reconfiguring these anyway so it's only really useful if you have default binds, otherwise you're looking at extra devtime on creating dynamic screens when you're already busy enough trying to get the base game done.
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User is offline   MrFlibble 

#3976

Still some more backstory, including in the form of "character profiles" like in Blake Stone wouldn't hurt. In fact it could add some extra flavour you'd otherwise not be able to inject into gameplay itself because there's only so much room for scripted sequences, and not many other ways to present game lore. How about Heskel's backstory? Zone 3 gives plenty of clues but a written narrative could really expand on that, add details here and there. Every big 2.5D FPS in the 90s had this kind of story in the manual (even the electronic manual EXEs which were a bit more than just readmes), along with enemy and item descriptions and the like.

Just don't say most users today won't read this kind of stuff anymore, or something like that. It doesn't sound like a good excuse for a deliberately retro/back-to-the-roots game to say that something was omitted simply because it's not done nowadays, so nobody bothered.

Even Freed∞m has a manual.
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User is offline   oasiz 

  • Dr. Effector

#3977

Freedoom is about replicating doom as a freeware alternative as a community effort (Going beyond with all bells & whistles).
It's not a product with a deadline and can easily have closer 10 years worth of contributions behind it (10 years? Been around for long anyway).
This doesn't exactly make for a fair comparison. I am aware that there are plenty of other examples but there are a lot of games as well.

"Most users won't read" is not an excuse, however it's also the reality. Keep in mind that "most", say 99%, can be 100 out of 10000 but it's still by far the most.
On previous post I explain the actual use of the manual and it's relation to games 15+ years ago, it seems you glanced over what I wrote there.
Saying that nobody bothered is putting words in my mouth, I am merely putting things to context.
I even agreed with help screens and such basics, however any EXEs went away a long time ago (Basically distributed BBS manuals) and actual manuals too since then.
Your point referred to the story portion (Picking out Fury), more on that later.

Big reason is that making actual manuals and side material does take time. You need to proofread it and make sure that information is up to date.
Developers are generally busy enough getting the game out that any "extra" would consume time out of the actual game. Main purpose of a manual is documentation and even back then it was typically publishers that provided this documentation.
In the 90s a manual could make a real difference between a returned product as it contained valuable installation instructions and help, remember that this is the time where people could be playing/buying their first ever PC game and games couldn't even agree on basic control schemes.
If people run in to issues these days, I'd argue that they would google i.e. "duke3d black screen on new game" instead.
Manuals are something you'd see as kickstarter stretch goals more than anything.
FAQ / Documentation / Support is otherwise provided on forums/twitter/ticketing systems (FAQs are just there to curb most tickets).

And now going to Fury, the game probably provides even more story than sw/duke3d throughout, considering that it has voice lines littered throughout, a story/credits screen accessible from F1, Shipped with a NFO on the founders edition complete with ASCII art, credits, personal oneliner "thanks" from devs, hell, it even has demoscene style greetings. Just because it doesn't have a bio telling Shelly's favourite food doesn't mean that it's not told one way or another. We knowingly opted for a more ingame way of storytelling and left many bits open for imagination but did imply many things. (Hint: She seems to enjoy Burgers and Pizza). So I will disagree with your point here :)
I'd say that Fury did quite a lot there for a game what it is, it provides an initial cutsene (like duke64) and a F1 screen that has the story you'd find on a manual.

And it's really true what I said before: We were so busy making the game that we really don't even have the full know on all enemy names or some extra story details, a lot of it was actually coming together more when we keyed in voice lines ;)
Gamedev isn't as planned and "romantic" as it might sound, some times major changes can happen just based on whatever a mapper/artist/code/etc.. happened to add in to fill in a blank... or decided over a 5min discord conversation. I wouldn't be surprised if publishers just made some random BS up to make enemies/characters/story more appealing in manuals.
In our case, didn't meant a ton of stuff wasn't tossed around all the time but these things evolve and change. Like with a book, each one has their view of something they read up.

Ps. I seriously hope you don't expect every retro game to add a character profiles just because of Blake Stone. :(
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User is offline   MrFlibble 

#3978

View Postoasiz, on 27 September 2020 - 10:21 AM, said:

Ps. I seriously hope you don't expect every retro game to add a character profiles just because of Blake Stone. :)

I don't of course (but I have to point out it would be a nice touch). But this conversation started as I asked about the official names of the enemies. There are official names for guns and items, so why not for these too? Some are mentioned in the update readme, which I'm assuming are as "official" as this gets.

View Postoasiz, on 27 September 2020 - 10:21 AM, said:

And now going to Fury, the game probably provides even more story than sw/duke3d throughout, considering that it has voice lines littered throughout, a story/credits screen accessible from F1, Shipped with a NFO on the founders edition complete with ASCII art, credits, personal oneliner "thanks" from devs, hell, it even has demoscene style greetings. Just because it doesn't have a bio telling Shelly's favourite food doesn't mean that it's not told one way or another. We knowingly opted for a more ingame way of storytelling and left many bits open for imagination but did imply many things. (Hint: She seems to enjoy Burgers and Pizza). So I will disagree with your point here ;)

Again, I just pointed out that the in-game storytelling and the bits in the manual (e.g. in case of Doom, Shadow Warrior or Duke Nukem 3D) are complementary, with the latter being able to introduce or elaborate on certain aspects of lore that cannot be easily made apparent with in-game means only.

View Postoasiz, on 27 September 2020 - 10:21 AM, said:

And it's really true what I said before: We were so busy making the game that we really don't even have the full know on all enemy names or some extra story details, a lot of it was actually coming together more when we keyed in voice lines :(

Well, it's never late to update, add and elaborate on these aspects, especially if the Ion Fury franchise is intended to last. I'm fully John Carmack on the role of plot/story in games, but if it's already there why not make it as good as it can be? (mind you, I'm not criticising the in-game storytelling in any way)

For example, ionfury.com apparently doesn't even have a section outlining what the game is about (at least, I just checked and couldn't find one). The most elaborate description of the game that I found is on the GOG.com page. Maybe my view is outdated and modern users don't need this (they watched review videos before buying or something). Well then perhaps I might as well be wrong on all of the above, and also err with the expectations that everything about a retro/classic style game should be as it was in the 90s, including the manual. At this point, I'm no longer sure.
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User is offline   oasiz 

  • Dr. Effector

#3979

ionfury.com is not really made by us so we have very little control over it :)
What you find ingame in fury is what you'd find in a hypothetical manual really, except perhaps for item/weapon/enemy descriptions which would likely just be very generic.

We'd probably just fill it with dumb shit like this at most:
"This here is a cultist, he has a nasty gun. Once a promising a goat farmer who lost his cat during summer of 1988 by dropping a sofa on it's head. This Man now swears revenge against humanity and is too dumb to realise that he himself is the problem."

We had a tweet or two about random bios but they weren't exactly that well received before release so we just dropped doing those (don't ask, I don't use twitter).
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User is offline   Outtagum 

#3980

Novel series when?

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_BrrqxOP8Gj4/Soz7yW-K_3I/AAAAAAAAAAs/sOIAVI47JGs/s400/RE+Novels.jpg https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/doom_novel_collection_1327.png

This post has been edited by Outtagum: 27 September 2020 - 01:08 PM

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User is online   Aleks 

#3981

I think games like Ion Fury or Duke don't really need elaborate story or bios, these aren't really games we play for the plot - the same way we don't watch action movies for the plot :) There's very little background to what's going on in Duke 3D as far as I'm concerned, besides the single screens after each episode and opening cutscene for The Birth - we still have no idea what happened with all the people on Earth, why Duke visits locations such as a sushi restaurant or random firestation on his way, why there is all of a sudden an alien station (Fusion Station) in the middle of E2 etc. - we're just there to kick ass really, all we know is that the aliens are stealing babes. And probably anything more than that would be cliche as hell.

Same goes for Ion Fury - really, it would be quite difficult to come up with an original story for a mad scientist going berserk and trying to destroy/rule the world. And I'm not sure I wanna read about the motivations why some cultists have just chosen to get robotic legs, while the others went all the way and became damn spiders with human heads ;) How would that even go - a spider type enemy saying "you know, it's like with tattoos - you first just want your sweetheart's name on your arm and all of a sudden you end up with with body art all over your body! I came for a cosmetic teeth replacement, but it felt so good I found out I always wanted to be a spider!".

Another aspect is leaving things for player's imagination - and this is even more important with modding friendly games like Duke 3D and IF. Too much information is somehow limiting the boundaries of modders imagination.

That said, of course there are other games, which actually do require elaborate plots and in fact rely on them more than on the fun factor itself, which is a diversity that I more than appreciate.
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User is offline   MrFlibble 

#3982

View Postoasiz, on 27 September 2020 - 12:35 PM, said:

We'd probably just fill it with dumb shit like this at most:
"This here is a cultist, he has a nasty gun. Once a promising a goat farmer who lost his cat during summer of 1988 by dropping a sofa on it's head. This Man now swears revenge against humanity and is too dumb to realise that he himself is the problem."

We had a tweet or two about random bios but they weren't exactly that well received before release so we just dropped doing those (don't ask, I don't use twitter).

It doesn't have to be "dumb shit". I think a player has quite legit reasons to wonder about some of the backstory. I haven't played Bombshell (yet) but the sequence where she meets Heskel at the White House kind of implied their story went a while back. This is then unfolded in Ion Fury (sort of -- I'm getting the feel that the game distances itself from Bombshell in a way, so maybe this is some kind of alternate timeline or reboot, even?), but here we do have some hits at backstory as well.

For example, considering the cultists, Shelly frequently refers to them as machines, while they appear to be cyborgs. One could wonder if they still retain free will or at least underwent the transformation process deliberately, or were brainwashed or maybe even controlled by some kind of software now? This theme gives me a rather strong Strife vibe where a very similar sort of trans- or dehumanisation happens to the antagonists, albeit under an alien influence.

There's also a recruitment poster of sorts found in the game where Heskel seemingly invites suicidal and sociopathic individuals to join him, in a sort of doomsday cult perhaps. Is this the main contingent of his conscripts?

You can further see no humans in the first levels, apart from a few killed GDF soldiers. Were the civilians taken away or just hiding? Does Heskel harvest human subjects to build his army? Later on there are some dead civilians too (and an entire slaughtered GDF base).

The readme backstory mentions a high level of crime in Neo D.C., in tune with typical portrayal of futuristic urban landscapes from the 80s. One could wonder if Heskel's revolt is at least in part motivated by an attempt to restore social order (kind of like a fascist coup), an aim that would be appealing to some of the citizens who could also become his followers (?).

I think these are reasonable lore questions and there's no real need to dismiss them or come up with ad hoc "dumb shit" for an explanation. They can be left unanswered, but creating a thought out backstory for such elements will only add depth to the game world.

Generally, the motivation of the antagonist is an important part of the main conflict. A concept like alien invasion (Duke3D) more or less handwaves it because it plays on the usual tropes (alien abduction etc.), and in part, this also applies to Shadow Warrior: Zilla is power hungry and corrupt, corporate culture is tied to organised crime etc. But Heskel at least appears to be a more complex, deep character who had once been good or at least tried to do something to improve human condition.

Anyway, I was thinking about some possible enemy names:
Spoiler

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User is offline   MetHy 

#3983

If you look into the con files you can find development enemy names used by Mblackwell, most of which are what we'd use internally or an abbreviation of. Don't take that as "official" names we'd use for a story for instance but it's probably as close as it gets.

This post has been edited by MetHy: 28 September 2020 - 12:33 AM

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User is offline   MrFlibble 

#3984

It occurred to me that the CONs could contain something but I didn't get around to checking them out yet.

View PostAleks, on 27 September 2020 - 01:52 PM, said:

I think games like Ion Fury or Duke don't really need elaborate story or bios, these aren't really games we play for the plot - the same way we don't watch action movies for the plot :) There's very little background to what's going on in Duke 3D as far as I'm concerned, besides the single screens after each episode and opening cutscene for The Birth
<...>
Same goes for Ion Fury - really, it would be quite difficult to come up with an original story for a mad scientist going berserk and trying to destroy/rule the world.

I have to disagree here. Ion Fury already has more story going on (in-game) where Duke3D is largely still a theme park ride with rather loosely connected levels. There's more coherence in Shelly's journey because the level design is more close-knit, and apparently it was better thought and planned out through the campaign compared to the progression in Duke3D or Shadow Warrior.

Also as I mentioned above, the plot in Duke3D is a lot more generic and trope-based. There isn't a lot to explain about an alien invasion, and besides, it takes place "twenty minutes into the future", in a more or less familiar world. By contrast, Ion Fury introduces us to what seems like a late 80s vision of a dystopian techno futuristic noir world we don't know much about, while Heskel's uprising is more close to the GDI vs. Nod conflict in Command & Conquer (and given that there are direct references to C&C in Ion Fury, the comparison doesn't seem too far fetched). I would not argue that more exposition than there already is is absolutely necessary, but it would be a welcome addition IMO.

An anyway, with what little plot development there is in Duke3D, it still has bits like this:
Attached File  dn3dhelp_000.png (10.54K)
Number of downloads: 6
I remember reading those descriptions for the first time, already after having familiarised myself with the game, and it was both enjoyable and added some depth to the game world. It isn't played for laughs either, even though Duke3D often does not take itself seriously, and contains helpful hints like the basic Trooper's ability to feign death, the Captains' teleportation etc.
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User is offline   Noddy 

#3985

The Exclusive interview with Ion Fury dev is finally done! Read it all about it, here at:

http://thegg.net/int...ent-and-future/
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User is offline   oasiz 

  • Dr. Effector

#3986

This all boils down to you wanting a more direct description of things where we knowingly went for the implied as explained before (Manual or not).
In this case it was about leaving enough nuggets to piece many things together, while not exactly locking which is right or wrong.
We had some dialogue around 2016 in-game via a radio chat but it just felt very awkward and plastered too way much information, plus it was boring.

Opposite of this is Bombshell where you have a lot of backstory/information, where "Washington Incident" refers to the events in this game.
However it's no secret that we went our own route.

That "dumb shit" was not a bad example in reality.
Nuggets we left around are largely the same ones we would use to assemble further information from and could come up with just about anything.
You assume we have written these things down in detail, we don't. It doesn't exist :)
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User is offline   MrFlibble 

#3987

View Postoasiz, on 28 September 2020 - 06:22 AM, said:

This all boils down to you wanting a more direct description of things

I would say that this is not an unfounded expectation on my part because such was the case with almost every predecessor of IF.

And why not? There's gameplay, and there's game lore, they are separate but go hand in hand. At least, it would be interesting to hear how and why the enemy design took the paths it did but not others. Did you first envisage the roles of the enemies (some obviously echo certain classic monsters from the original 90s 2.5D FPS games), and then the appearance?

Like, why do the cultists wear those hooded cloaks -- was it simply as a reference to Blood cultists or something else? Did you want the sprites to have a specific shape? Or to convey a certain feeling? (e.g. it's frequently raining so they wear those, as impractical as they look)

View Postoasiz, on 28 September 2020 - 06:22 AM, said:

We had some dialogue around 2016 in-game via a radio chat but it just felt very awkward and plastered too way much information, plus it was boring.

Would it be possible to share a transcript, or maybe even a video of this build?

View Postoasiz, on 28 September 2020 - 06:22 AM, said:

That "dumb shit" was not a bad example in reality.

Those descriptions would not have to be in the "bio" format. How about excerpts from classified GDF intel on the Heskel threat? I think that would suit the overall theme more than a "bio" that mentions Shelly's favourite food (who cares? I only remember this kind of info from the in-game readme from Realms of Chaos, were you referencing that one?).
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User is offline   oasiz 

  • Dr. Effector

#3988

Transcript.. check the post in previous page, I had the name of the CON file there IIRC.
Note that only existed in a very limited capacity, mostly zone3 (as a test) and mainly because we didn't know if we could have voice lines or not. There are initial story concepts specific to z3 that got scrapped around shortly after that. No gameplay existed for those aside from mostly identical geometry as crude blockouts. Roughly about going inside the institute, getting the lockdown, heskel announcing that there are bombs and your squadmates got injured downstairs (All NPCs were scrapped very early). You get up, upload some data, get to rooftop and have a battle there, then escape down the elevator as everything blows up.
These mostly existed as wall-text that told you what would happen. This was when the game was meant to be a prequel as a rushed tie-in on a tight schedule.

However now you're asking for developer commentary, I feel like you're changing the target each post.
Developer commentary and discussing those is another topic and approach on it's own and I'm sure these WILL happen at some point but now we're talking about an entirely different subject.
I'm sure we can tell plenty on how things evolved or design decisions, again a different thing from what you have asked in previous posts.

Not sure what you want anymore, There are no excerpts and never was, this all would be information made up on the spot. Not something that exactly feels genuine now. Hence my example, it wasn't meant to be serious for anything other than making a point.
You are asking for something that does not exist and didn't have a chance to exist. I'll just accept that you have different expectations.

There is a disagreement on in-game storytelling being enough in this case and you will just have to accept that this is how it is. Bluntly put.

This ain't a Lynch movie in the sense that everything has to be shrouded in mystery and a puzzle to be solved but this is a game where we did put in a ton more than we had to :)
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User is offline   MrFlibble 

#3989

View Postoasiz, on 28 September 2020 - 08:02 AM, said:

However now you're asking for developer commentary, I feel like you're changing the target each post.

Not at all, at least these things seem related to my mind. I think the name of a character (enemy) and the story behind it are inevitably related to how it was conceived and what role it was intended to fulfil.

My question here is, haven't you asked yourselves (during development) who or what these guys are? Or was it simply, we want essentially a Doom zombieman type enemy, an artist will make us a nice cyborg dude and we'll stick with that? If the latter, then of course making a story/description would be extra work, preferably for someone who specialises in creative writing.

I just imagined that as the maps were developed, the mappers themselves would make up some parts of the world/story (at least in their heads) as opposed to simply arranging ambushes, traps and other obstacles. At least, I get a strong impression that this is the case from the levels themselves. Do you have a personal version of the story in your mind? (even if you never discussed this with other devs?) Or was the schedule so tight there was no time for thoughts like that?

I'm sorry if this is somehow private and not up for discussion. I don't want to tread where I'm not allowed to. But for now these seem like legit questions on the user side that I may ask.

View Postoasiz, on 28 September 2020 - 08:02 AM, said:

This ain't a Lynch movie

Speaking of which (thanks for reminding me), I got trapped in the Twin Peaks Easter egg section several times. If I stay put in the corridor when the lights go out I get teleported back to the main part of the level eventually, but if I try to move around as the tiles fall sometimes the teleportation seems not to happen. This is in the patched GOG version.
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User is offline   oasiz 

  • Dr. Effector

#3990

"At least, it would be interesting to hear how and why the enemy design took the paths it did but not others. Did you first envisage the roles of the enemies (some obviously echo certain classic monsters from the original 90s 2.5D FPS games), and then the appearance?"

This is what I referred to. You are directly asking about that. Don't pretend :)
Answering this has nothing to really do with the story anymore and is instead more about design flow & process.

Anyway, to answer that and your current post: Enemies were designed in a very iterative "rule of cool" way, stuff that would fit the game world. Augmented stuff in this case (as evidenced by posters, heskel's lines, etc..). We just came up with ideas and went on. That's how these usually work. Something that sucks simply gets removed even if it sounded good on paper.
This is what I've been trying to say. These things just happen. Visual design often is dictated by game play (is the enemy recognizable?) and so on.
Mechboss was born because we wanted shit to explode and have something big to fight. It's that simple. And nukage is made out of mutton because I hate lamb/mutton.
We have of course a mind map of ideas thrown around about various things but in many cases we even disagree with each other (or you get a different answer), you might find some in a future product i.e. DLC.

Mappers always had their own ideas and such, which you have in the final product as progression. Some ideas didn't make it but got replaced with something different instead, some got expanded a lot.
Like I said, most of the overall story progression was fleshed out during voice line setup (I feel like I'm repeating many things here).
You seem hungry for answers but there are no magic hidden documents, pre-release stuff or such to really give you what you're looking for.
Even 90% of what "could" be there would not be canon or was implemented in a different way in the final product.

Unlike say.. Duke, Fury was quite consistent with the vision from start to end. However there was still a very iterative workflow.
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