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PostPosted: 25 Mar 2013, 12:50 
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DMAJohnson wrote:
I'm having enough trouble trying to figure out exactly what the story's scope should be.

The correct answer is impossibly huge. :zeth:



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PostPosted: 25 Mar 2013, 13:44 
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I've already responded to a lot of points in my first post, so I'll try to avoid answering duplicates here. Let me know if you asked a question and don't feel I adequately answered it.

Also, before I forget, let me know how you wish to be named in the game's credits. I would like everyone who tested the game and gave feedback to be credited for their work. Real names or usernames are both acceptable so long as they're not obscene. If you want to be credited by your real name but don't want to post it here, you can email it to me.

Zeth wrote:
The correct answer is impossibly huge. :zeth:

Another sudden quake rocks the world around you and you are thrown to your feet. Mere miles away you watch San Francisco sink into the growing lava sea. As you regain your footing, you see that the ground below the president is about to burst open. You shout...
1. "Mr. President! Take my hand! You have to survive! The starship will be back for us any minute now!"
2. "I didn't vote for you. Save yourself!"
3. "This game started out about hiding in a bunker. How the hell did we even get here?"

Albert Clare wrote:
Waetcher: His Name is the Thing that sticks out most to me; I consistently want to read it as "Wachter" or "Wechter"; he isn't unlikable, but I never felt a strong attachment to him.

His name is actually misspelled throughout most of the game, most notably in his textbox header. It's supposed to be spelled “Waechter”.

Albert Clare wrote:
Overall: It might have been better to have Sections in which each of the non-player Characters accompanied Serenity.

Originally, in the part where
Spoiler: show
David goes with you alone, the idea was that you would choose which of the other four would accompany you. Loved the idea, but I just didn't think I would have the time to make it work.


dinowoman wrote:
I was in convos on the messengers all the way through, so I was stopping and starting all the time. I didn't noticed whether the clock carried on running while the game window wasn't on top.

When the pause menu is up, or the game window loses focus, the gameplay clock stops.

dinowoman wrote:
I've played very little in the way of adventure games of this type, with the exception of some of the Ace Attorney series (not sure I'd have counted that as adventure games, but Wikipedia describes it as that, and the gaming style is very similar), which I like very much.

Ace Attorney is somewhere between an adventure game and a visual novel. I've only played the first game (I have it on my iPod), but it was one of my references in how to get character interaction and environment searches to gel. The way characters are always in the foreground and “disappear” when you search an area was lifted directly from Phoenix Wright.

dinowoman wrote:
Spoiler: show
I also felt the slider, as s/he/it currently appears in sketched form didn't look especially intimidating or original - it reminded me a bit of a cross between a skeleton and ET.

As noted above,
Spoiler: show
the slider
is being redesigned.

dinowoman wrote:
I also liked the unexpectedness of suddenly finding yourself
Spoiler: show
back in the car park, with everything as it was before you arrived,
rather a nice touch - especially when I looked in
Spoiler: show
my inventory and found it almost entirely full of chainsaws.

I'm glad people are enjoying this. Although it was done
Spoiler: show
to sneak in an extra room by just reusing an old background, I was afraid it would feel too much like just that--sneaking in an extra room by just reusing an old background. I think the way it's presented and the way it puts its own original spin on the area makes it something more than that,
so I'm happy with it.

dinowoman wrote:
I presume the
Spoiler: show
succession of blank screens, and screens with Adrian visible but no dialogue or narrative,
during the flashback
Spoiler: show
where Serenity first met him
were due to them not having been completed yet, rather than a bug?

Sort of. As noted above, I'm not 100% convinced that the memory segments add to the story which is why there are only two instead of the full five or six that were/are planned. How I approach them is also a bit of a thorn in my side. The idea was that all the memories would just have the white background to both save time (one less background to do; those things take forever) and to make the memories visually different from “current time”.

Other than being less visually interesting, the spanner in the works is
Spoiler: show
the monster in the second memory. I can't NOT show it, obviously.
What becomes of the memory segment backgrounds--and the memories themselves--will be decided when I begin the next pass on the story, which probably won't be until May depending on Real Life™ and how long the graphics I'm working on take.

dinowoman wrote:
The gender of a game character should fit the character, not the player.

This is where my worry lies, though, as I've noted previously. The player IS the character since it's a second person game. Hammering in the “you play in the second person as a woman with a family” aspect with the game's "marketing", as I've decided to do, will hopefully prevent the peanut gallery from becoming too vocal and whiney about it.

That said, the fact that you and some other people find this approach to the protagonist refreshing and don't understand why I'm worried about it actually makes me feel a little better about running with it.

dinowoman wrote:
There was only one puzzle that I found particularly difficult.
Spoiler: show
That was finding all the fuses. I wonder if I would ever have found the one under the water if I hadn't consulted someone else.

Spoiler: show
The fuse hunt has managed a fairly “meh” reaction all around.
I'm not completely sure what I want to do about it.

dinowoman wrote:
I had no clue how to even begin
Spoiler: show
to think about setting up a trap. I'd tried using the distance finder in all plausible places, but it never occurred to me to show it to David.

David asks the player
Spoiler: show
to show him items when he's along for that section of the game, but he only brings it up once so it's easy to miss.
Somebody else pointed out that
Spoiler: show
David is standing right there when you find it and it seems like he should notice it right away. My thought is that he's too busy playing with the flashlight--when he's not looking over his shoulder for the slider--to really pay attention.
That part of the game needs the most work (and Serenity never shuts during it) so expect things to change big time in the final game, unless I'm just really crunched for time and money and have to rush it out the door. (I don't want it to come to that, obviously.)

dinowoman wrote:
I felt totally lost in
Spoiler: show
the forest for a little bit, when I found that I couldn't go anywhere or interact with anything, but I think that was quite good - it contributed to empathy with the sense of helplessness that Serenity must have had.

Yeah, you're supposed to feel a little lost there. So long as it's not to the point of frustration, I think it's okay.

dinowoman wrote:
The opening screen, in which the narrator tells us that our universe is like a stream, with the squiggly representation of that in the graphics behind it, reminded me strongly of the start of FFVII Advent Children, where Marlene is explaining about the Life Stream. I don't know if the similarity is coincidental or whether you were influenced by it.

Influenced would be the word, yes. I felt it was a little TOO close, without putting any new spin on it, and so changed the graphic to something else. Couldn't get it to look the way I wanted anyway, so meh.

dinowoman wrote:
I was surprised how young the sketched Adrian looked. I'd have placed him as early 20s, which is a bit too young to have a son of Travis' age.

The current official ages of the characters, as given in the world bible:

Serenity Bell - 28 years old
Travis Bell - 8 years old
Jacob Waechter - 29 years old
David Graham - 16 years old (one week away from 17th birthday)
Kristina Walsh - 16 years old
Adrian Bell - 30 years old
Dr. Whiskers - none given
Spoiler: show
Richard Pontier - 12 Jan 1946 (exact age not given)
Slider - N/A?


dinowoman wrote:
Spoiler: show
Pontier seems to be cold and obnoxious (maybe even a little sinister?). It made me want to know more about him, especially after the notes found in the bunker.

Spoiler: show
Pontier
is integral to the story's mythology, but he doesn't really have that much to do with the current story other than things that are hinted at. I'm not sure how much will work its way until the final game or if the character will even be present in the game at all if the memory segments are dropped. The character's graphics were finished, however, so I'd hate to waste them: http://t.co/l8SmneeV

dinowoman wrote:
The fact that when you clicked on things with Interaction selected, some of the actions shown against the items in question were not actually possible (such as 'climb' a ladder that had disintegrated), while others (such as 'ignore' against a sign) gave away what sort of interaction was involved, even before you'd clicked the item, so there was really no need to bother to read the text that it brought up.

This is by design. I don't like to have to guess at what clicking on something would do in these kinds of games. I'll try to make the text more interesting, and possibly consider your "examine" suggestion in some cases.

dinowoman wrote:
Occasionally things were mentioned in detail, suggesting they were important, and then never mentioned again, most notably the key in the glass cabinet, which was described, and the characters discussed, but once you got the cabinet open wasn't even listed as being in there.

Spoiler: show
The game adds the key to the room, but the interface has changed since then so it no longer shows up to interact with it. It exists only so that the player will want to get into the cabinet; it was/is another red herring item.
It may or may not exist in the final version.

dinowoman wrote:
I'm not sure I have a least favourite 'part' as such, but I found it a slightly unsatisfactory that there were so many hints about much bigger aspects of the story that were never followed up.

I'll try to fix this in the future.


Thank you both very much for your feedback.


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PostPosted: 25 Mar 2013, 14:32 
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I agree with Les about the red herring key in the cabinet. I just start playing today and even after I
Spoiler: show
opened the cabinet and took the flashlight, I kept trying tools and interactions on it and tried talking to the characters--particularly Kris--trying to find out about this key. I didn't really twig that the key may be unimportant until I stumbled on Kris saying "Oh yeah there's a trick to opening it."
I'm really point-driven like that until something distracts my attention away though. That's why none of my projects are nearing completion. Pseudo-ADD.



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PostPosted: 25 Mar 2013, 18:02 
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I actually completely forgot about
Spoiler: show
the key, since by the time I got the cabinet open Kris had already gone into the bathroom and opened up the closet, and the plot moved on from there.


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PostPosted: 25 Mar 2013, 21:21 
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You guys are one person away from me drawing a terrible drawing of us.

I'm glad you could join us Dale, even if it's only to answer questions. =)



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PostPosted: 25 Mar 2013, 22:09 
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Are you counting me as one of the correspondents towards the goal? :P


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PostPosted: 25 Mar 2013, 22:11 
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No, but Mark is a member, and he has.

Though if it gets really close to the next level once April 15 rolls around, I am willing to count Dale since he is giving feedback to the feedback. But only if you guys are like, one away from the next level on April 15.



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PostPosted: 25 Mar 2013, 22:12 
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What about yourself?


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PostPosted: 25 Mar 2013, 22:38 
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I haven't given feedback on that version. If I can fit it in between the 23094832094 things I'm doing right now, I will count myself.



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PostPosted: 26 Mar 2013, 12:30 
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Clear Time: 2:33:05

I was kinda weighted down by the fact that I would forget to pause while jotting some notes or whatever, and I really like to just explore things. So yeah, I took my time poking around the game—I'm like Rachel in that I like to sorta laze my way through open-ended games. Ask anybody who TORs or plays Portal with me—it can be nauseating. Anyway, I also took notes as I went through on things that I liked, disliked, and just thought, uh, noteworthy. I'll append any of those not addressed by your questions to the end of the post.

Before I actually get into the review though: DMA you are my spirit animal.
I must ask though: have you ever played 9 Hours 9 Persons 9 Doors? Your game and it have a nearly identical playstyle and suspense-based story and atmosphere. They both have exceedingly similar overtones of conspiracy theories (there's even a direct parallel to Montauk, though story-appropriate, and the entire thing effectively takes place
Spoiler: show
in an old run down bunker that somebody has sabotaged with puzzles that the protagonist has to solve so as to provide the antagonist with a solution to something they want)
. The stories themselves are entirely different, of course, but it definitely felt worth pointing out.

Right, I'll get to those questions now.
1. Do you normally play, or like to play, adventure games?
Yessir, yessir. Radiant Historia, Portal and 999 are at the top of my list and this seems to fit in right nicely with them.

2. What is your overall assessment of the game as it stands?
I was mentioning this to Rachel yesterday: I went in expecting this to be quality already just because I'm familiar with you, but even so I was remarkably impressed by how engaged this game got me right off the bat. While I wholeheartedly support Indie gamemaking, I tend to be highly skeptical of them as well, and, well, I had trouble being skeptical of this game. True, the character art wasn't exactly my favourite style, but even that aside the background and icon graphics that were completed were...really professional and impressive and I loved them. I'm a pixel artist at heart though, so take the character art comment with a grain of salt. Anyway, the gameplay was also deeply engaging, and save a couple little things I'm certain I'll touch on later in this post, I was quite satisfied. The game was a little short and I felt the ending was kinda rushed, but my overall assessment of the game as it stands right here and now, succinctly is: Highly Impressed.

3. Gameplay aside, what are your thoughts on the story as a whole?
It's me. Like all over. These are the sorts of stories I like to write and to read. And you hit all the right points. Your explanations were logical and accurate for the real world but simple and didn't weight the story down with technical details, which is something I struggle with because I never know when to stop. Your characters were a little more varied, I feel. Characters I liked:
Spoiler: show
Waechter, Serenity, David, Kris, Pontier
. Characters I did not like:
Spoiler: show
Adrian and Travis
. The latter two, as well as
Spoiler: show
Kris
felt fairly flat and static. That having been said, I've already noted that you've written extensive backstory for one and it's simply not apparent in the game, for another you've already acknowledged she'll be having an expanded role in the final version of the game, and the other you've remarked you purposefully made a passive role because you don't want the main character distracted by a desire to strangle him--which I am immensely grateful for because he was my least favourite character.

The only thing that really bothered me about the story, which I mentioned already, was the ending. It felt rushed and compacted, and despite
Spoiler: show
Ren being stabbed
still felt sorta canned. Combined with the short gametime and
Spoiler: show
Kris
having little to do, I felt like perhaps thereshould have been a final segment to the game here where Ren and
Spoiler: show
Kris were separated from Waechter and David as the Slider makes a last ditch attempt to simply run away with Travis, buying enough time to escape into his universe with the kid and worry about killing Ren with its thinly alluded to massive invasionary force. The puzzles would be more difficult as they would be haphazard things caused by stuff falling in and out of the Junction, it would give Kris something to do in a way that mirrors the segment of the story with David, and kill the rushed, flat feeling at the end of the game, for me, at least.


4. Does it bother you that you're playing as a woman?
To the contrary, I really enjoyed it. As I've mentioned to various people before, when I play RPGs of any flavour, I enjoy playing characters who are very dissimilar to me but have some sort of resounding touchstone to me. This is why I next to never play humans in sci-fi oriented games and tend to have feminine protagonists in many of my stories. Sometimes I do want to play as myself, but if I wanted to do that on a regular basis I'd just LARP or, well, live my everyday life. RPGs are about experiencing something different, and Junction totally delivered that in the best possible way. I can't think of any other game where you play a character like Ren.

5. Does it bother you that the character you're playing as is not an AFGNCAAP but has some backstory and predefined relationships?
Definitely not. It only serves to bolster everything I said in response to Q4. It also shows how well designed the world and characters are, which I deeply appreciate.

6. How difficult are the puzzles? How could they be improved?
I liked that you had a clear ramping up of difficulty. I suck at designing puzzles, so I really can't offer any suggestions on how they can be improved aside from some incidental observations that I'll touch on a bit later. One at least in the next question.

7. Did you ever feel "lost" in the game and not know where to go next or what to do?
There were three places.
A.
Spoiler: show
Setting the trap. The Trap Puzzle had me stumped. I mean it was obvious that I had to use the distance metre, but I had no idea HOW to use the distance metre. I showed lots of stuff to David so that was no issue, but in retrospect, I think I didn't figure it out because my brain didn't parse the fact that I had to measure the distance to something that wasn't there, namely the open door.
I don't know if that makes any sense, given nobody else really seems to have had that specific problem. It's probably me-centric.
B.
Spoiler: show
The final fuse in the Fuse Hunt Puzzle. I was told people had trouble with the fuse in the water but that didn't bother me at all—it turned out to be the fuse behind the poster in the hallway, since I next to never had to use the Take feature and so it just never occurred to me to try taking the poster.

C. So I mindnumbingly hit Move, Go Forward/Go Back over and over in
Spoiler: show
the forest before I thought to try the cell phone
. I don't think this should really affect a change needed in the game though. I think it was just me being stupid.

Oh, and one other thing: The
Spoiler: show
cipher machine red herring and obviously ciphered notebooks you can find on the storage shelves in the warehouse while searching for safehouse clues kept me occupied waaaaay longer than it probably was intended to. I think this was the Rusty Old Truck of the game for me, though worth noting is that said truck gave me no problems.


8. How are the (finished) graphics? Do they fit the gameplay and story?
Mm, I touched on this earlier, but I'll expound a wee bit here. the backgrounds and icons were top-notch, pro looking graphics and I loved looking at them. I was less impressed by the character art, which, although good, just didn't feel right. It jarred with the suspenseful feel of the story, I think. That style suggests happier tones and atmospheres to me, with the large, soft eyes and whatnot.

9. How are the non-player characters; what are your thoughts on them?
Touched on this in Q3. To get down to the nitty gritty, I think I'd jut really like to see/hear more of Kris and Pontier. In addition, it seemed weird to me that David had that sort of magenta-y pink text colour and Kris's was that mellow green. The green was fine for Kris, but the magenta felt all wrong for David. Felt like they should be switched. Kris's green really seemed to sync with David for me. If you wanted to avoid the magenta-y pink for Kris--I know LEs would opt for that--a really good option might be like a light cyan or some such? Also, going back to Pontier:
Spoiler: show
I looked at that character art you posted earlier in this thread and was really intrigued by how much he seemed to have in common with the sketched Slider. This is probably entirely coincidental, especially since you're going to be redesigning the Slider, but I know at least that's the sort of red herring I like to see.
There's a related comment in Q11 too.

10. How did you feel about the ending (if you reached it)?
I disliked it. I felt like I had fallen in stride with this awesome heroine and had pulled together this impromptu team that could overcome anything, and then everything was
Spoiler: show
just solved by a magic child and the threat was over. Good job guys. The end. And these skills I've spent the game acquiring and embellishing are being wasted when logically this is the moment the game has been preparing me for.
I felt Mass Effect'd to me. I mean I hate to say that because I liked this game, but, well, yeah. Honesty is the best policy for building a good game, right?

11. What was your favorite and least favorite aspects of gameplay?
Not much to say here. The gameplay was straightforward, mostly and I was cool with it. It might be nice if you had a little letter at the corner of the ability icons to indicate the hotkeys--I didn't think to even try them till about 3/4 of the way through the game. But yeah. No real problems here.

Oh, I did think of one thing. It sorta falls across multiple questions but I'm going to put it here:
I really really liked the fact that various characters retained their general state of emotion at a given time even when you aren't directly interacting with them. Like, in some games a character just has an image that appears all the time until you actually speak to them, at which point they may change expressions to sad or angry or happy or what have you. In your game, when David is sad, he appears sad even while you aren't talking to him. It's a sort of realism that you can pull on visual cues like that to help you figure out problems that many many games lack for some reason I can't fathom that really puts your little indie gem high in my mental game ranking.

12. What was your favorite and least favorite parts of the story?
My favourite part of the story...I don't think I could really pick out a favourite part. It's much easier to pick out my least favourite part, which is the ending. I also seem to differ from most people about
Spoiler: show
emerging back in the parking lot after the forest and finding the chainsaw-happy inventory. I mean I didn't hate it, but I didn't find it particularly amusing and I didn't understand why the junction would reproduce that scenario. It just felt like a needless repetition of an action that had no consequence one way or the other, and wasn't a tricky challenge or anything to solve, so I didn't like it.


13. Do you feel this game is commercially viable?
I think...if it were longer, with a fleshier endgame, and the character art was a little more suited to the mood and atmosphere of the game then yes, entirely.

14. How much do you think the game should sell for? How much would you be willing to pay?
I, uh, really have a terrible concept of things related to money. I could not possibly answer this question.

Righto, here are some miscellaneous notes I jotted down while playing and didn't include in the above remarks:
Spoiler: show
--Chocolate cake breakfast option. In a game about playing yourself in a questionable reality. There needs to be a Portal reference here.
--Waechter's dismissal of “strictly speaking, a dimension is something entirely” had me practically in joyous tears. I really enjoyed seeing some realworld accuracy reflected in a manner that doesn't weight the game down, rather than simply dismissing the fact once again for the sake of possibly annoying potential players.
--It was weird that earlier on Waechter kept saying “especially for situations like this” in regards to stuff that had been prepared. The repetition made his speech feel stiff, but at the same time it also felt like him. It'd be neat if maybe somebody threw out a little jibe or barb about it. “What, you don't have a 'carry us all to safety 'copter' prepared especially for this situation, Professor Awesome?”
--I was highly amused when Waetcher's body disappeared and just his facial features were talking to me, floating, as he was talking about emotions and expectations distorting reality and how he doesn't want the kids panicking.
--Waechter's “Old Man” moment once you open the hatch was pretty awesome and broke the tension in EXACTLY The right way.
--Similar is the no trespassing sign you can only choose to ignore. That was a nice touch.



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PostPosted: 26 Mar 2013, 13:29 
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There were hotkeys?


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PostPosted: 26 Mar 2013, 14:09 
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Welp that's five.

Guess I'm pulling out the crayons (not literally).



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PostPosted: 26 Mar 2013, 14:14 
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One of my original notes was "this game really needs hotkeys." Then, I dunno, I just hit the M buton and it opened the Move dialogue, so, yes, there were hotkeys. It worked for Inventory too. I didn't try the rest.

I've thought of a few more things since I've finished that post and walked away and come back.

1. You can credit me as Ethan Welnicki. Forgot about that.

2. The commercial viability of this game would skyrocket if it had multiple different endings. Maybe one where Serenity
Spoiler: show
did end up trapped in an endless cycle of invented puzzles to solve forever. And another where she actually did just die from the wound the Slider gave her.
The negatives are what easily come to mind, but some other positives would be possible too with some thought I think.

3. In regards to what I suggested in Q3 with Serenity and
Spoiler: show
Kris, you could also use that to expound on Kris's denouement. Adrian basically flat tells us that she's interested in law enforcement, and everybody perceives her to be very athletically inclined. Since the proposed scenario would be more action oriented, perhaps even still with hostile creatures about, you surprise the player with Kris's ability to handle Ren's gun, and use that to expound on her character more, which she really needed.


EDIT:
I should also posit that while the
Spoiler: show
Fuse Hunt
was remarked as being a weaker point in the feedback thus far, and I myself got hung up there on multiple items, I strongly desire for it to not go away or even change drastically. It appropriately felt like a core part of the game, and without a full ending IMO, it is rather vital as it constitutes a substantial portion of the gameplay proper of the game. I personally think that this area could be cleared up to a large degree with the completion of the Notebook feature that was not accessible in this Beta version of the game that we test played.



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PostPosted: 26 Mar 2013, 14:49 
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The Time Being wrote:
There were hotkeys?
I also had no idea there were hotkeys. Not that I was bothered by that.
Zeth wrote:
I should also posit that while the
Spoiler: show
Fuse Hunt
was remarked as being a weaker point in the feedback thus far, and I myself got hung up there on multiple items, I strongly desire for it to not go away or even change drastically.
I likewise wouldn't want to see it go. I didn't see that fact that I got stuck as a failure in the game design. A bit of minor editing should solve any issues that were raised.
DMAJohnson wrote:
dinowoman wrote:
I presume the
Spoiler: show
succession of blank screens, and screens with Adrian visible but no dialogue or narrative,
during the flashback
Spoiler: show
where Serenity first met him
were due to them not having been completed yet, rather than a bug?

Sort of. As noted above, I'm not 100% convinced that the memory segments add to the story which is why there are only two instead of the full five or six that were/are planned. How I approach them is also a bit of a thorn in my side. The idea was that all the memories would just have the white background to both save time (one less background to do; those things take forever) and to make the memories visually different from “current time”.
It wasn't the white backgrounds I was querying in my comment, but rather the lack of anything at all. But I think you answered that in your response to Rachel's comment on the same section: there's a bug that affects the rest of the sequence if you select a particular response.

I was also thinking after I'd posted my feedback that one possible way of handling all the dangling threads regarding the wider story might be to take another leaf out of Ace Attorney's book and have three or four relatively self-contained short games that work together to build up the whole picture (if Capcom didn't accuse you of nicking their ideas). It'd be a lot of work, I know, but it might be a nice long-term goal, and would bring the whole up to a length that would be easily long enough for a commercial venture.

As for what to credit me as, I'm not really fussy. If most people are using real names, then use Les Hayes. If not, then dinowoman.



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PostPosted: 26 Mar 2013, 15:53 
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Completion time: 2:11:56. Which is a lot faster than I was expecting, given how long I spent wandering back and forth.

DMAJohnson wrote:
Quote:
I'd say the point at which I went from "I'm playing this so I can get Crystal to LP something" to "I'm playing this to see what happens next" was...

I hate to gush, but I'll be honest here. I read your post late last night and this comment made my day. (Or my allergy-fueled-endless-runny-nose filled night, as the case was.) I hope the final version of the game hooks people a little earlier on, though. The game's demo won't last until that far into the game.
It was right around
Spoiler: show
the Sliders showing up outside
for me too, I'd say.

DMAJohnson wrote:
Serenity is literally another you; your avatar in another world. As such, her personality consists entirely of how other people would perceive a player avatar as being: obsessive about searching for things, intrusive, slightly forgetful, and a bit of a kleptomaniac.
I did like the way people occasionally commented on me looking around everywhere and picking up random stuff. :D

1. Do you normally play, or like to play, adventure games?
I've never really played this kind of thing before (the closest I've come is Professor Layton, I think), but I quite liked it once I got the hang of it.

2. What is your overall assessment of the game as it stands?
Kind of short, but it's interesting while it lasts.

3. Gameplay aside, what are your thoughts on the story as a whole?
It's good, but I'd have to agree with TTB that it feels more like part of a story.

4. Does it bother you that you're playing as a woman?
Not really. It's nothing new to me.

5. Does it bother you that the character you're playing as is not an AFGNCAAP but has some backstory and predefined relationships?
Not at all. I was curious about whether the "she tends to forget stuff" thing was an actual medical condition or something (when Travis was talking about it at the start it sounded like she had some kind of anterograde amnesia), but it seems like it was mostly just a reason to have the notebook feature.

6. How difficult are the puzzles? How could they be improved?
Honestly, the puzzles I had most trouble with were the ones where the answer was simpler than I was expecting. Particularly bits where it never occurred to me to just 'Take' something, like the
Spoiler: show
walrus poster
or
Spoiler: show
Travis
. Or the thing with
Spoiler: show
using the distance finder to set up an alarm - after talking to David I thought I needed to find some other item to hold the button down, it didn't really occur to me to just point it at the doorway as-is
. Not that I didn't like how simple the solutions turned out to be - I guess I just needed to stop overthinking.

7. Did you ever feel "lost" in the game and not know where to go next or what to do?
There were a few points when I thought I'd run out of things to try and had to come look through the thread. Mostly the ones I mentioned above.

8. How are the (finished) graphics? Do they fit the gameplay and story?
Pretty good. Though I initially thought Waetcher was older than he's apparently supposed to be. (As did the other David, apparently.)

9. How are the non-player characters; what are your thoughts on them?
I have to admit that I didn't like David at first (ha), but that changed over the course of the bit you already know I'm talking about. Would have been nice to have similar sections with the others, though, particularly Kris.

10. How did you feel about the ending (if you reached it)?
The stuff with
Spoiler: show
Pontier
felt like a sequel hook to me, really. It just seemed odd to have that plot thread start up and get left hanging over people's heads.

11. What was your favorite and least favorite aspects of gameplay?
I did like the way that some of the things you pick up keep on being useful in future puzzles (like the
Spoiler: show
pool net
and
Spoiler: show
hammer
).
I think least favourite would probably be continually flicking back and forth between Move/Talk/Interact/Take/etc. Somebody mentioned hotkeys, but I had no idea they were there. (On a related note, is there an ingame menu for saving/looking up hotkeys/whatever? If there is, I couldn't find it.) Might be simpler if you just clicked something then chose what you wanted to do with it, rather than the other way round, but I imagine that'd be a lot of hassle to change at this stage.

12. What was your favorite and least favorite parts of the story?
I quite liked the
Spoiler: show
dreamlike bits between reaching the safe room door and confronting the Slider
. Maybe it was just nice to be outside again. I kind of wonder what was happening with everyone else at that stage - it sounded like Waetcher apparently
Spoiler: show
ended up in the safe room alone, but we don't really know what David, Kris and Travis were seeing, except that Travis got caught by the Slider at some point
.
Least favourite, I'm not sure about. It kind of bothered me that the solution to
Spoiler: show
opening the closet in the bathroom
was basically "
Spoiler: show
walk back and forth until you can ask Kris how to do it
", but that's not exactly "story".

13. Do you feel this game is commercially viable?
Honestly, it seems a little short for that, but I'm not sure how long games like this tend to be.

14. How much do you think the game should sell for? How much would you be willing to pay?
Really got no idea on this, sorry.


Also, I choose to believe that there was a Mew hiding under that truck.


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David wrote:
Honestly, the puzzles I had most trouble with were the ones where the answer was simpler than I was expecting. Particularly bits where it never occurred to me to just 'Take' something, like the
Spoiler: show
walrus poster
or
Spoiler: show
Travis
. Or the thing with
Spoiler: show
using the distance finder to set up an alarm - after talking to David I thought I needed to find some other item to hold the button down, it didn't really occur to me to just point it at the doorway as-is
. Not that I didn't like how simple the solutions turned out to be - I guess I just needed to stop overthinking.
I'm really glad I was not alone here.
David wrote:
Would have been nice to have similar sections with the others, though, particularly Kris.

The stuff with
Spoiler: show
Pontier
felt like a sequel hook to me, really. It just seemed odd to have that plot thread start up and get left hanging over people's heads.

Also, I choose to believe that there was a Mew hiding under that truck.
QFT
David wrote:
11. What was your favorite and least favorite aspects of gameplay?
I did like the way that some of the things you pick up keep on being useful in future puzzles (like the
Spoiler: show
pool net
and
Spoiler: show
hammer
).
Spoiler: show
Image

But seriously, I really liked that item's recurrence too.



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PostPosted: 26 Mar 2013, 19:41 
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Since the subject of the art keeps coming up, here are a few of the (mostly) finished backgrounds that I've done recently.
http://t.co/Amf6vmJ9GB
http://t.co/zoRifzNGvB
http://t.co/XifQHrL1

And Serenity's ID Badge makes it more obvious just where she actually works.
http://t.co/jeccubY9

If you go to the “View all Pictures and Videos” area of my Twitter you can see more Junction art, along with a bunch of work-in-progress stuff.

I was also told to post a link to the next Let's Draw, so here you go.

Zeth wrote:
Before I actually get into the review though: DMA you are my spirit animal.

This is the first time I've ever gotten this compliment, but hopefully not the last.

Zeth wrote:
I must ask though: have you ever played 9 Hours 9 Persons 9 Doors?

Yes. I was even listening to the soundtrack today while I worked. Did not play it until well after the build you played was released, though.

Junction was actually more directly inspired by the original Deus Ex of all things, and the atmosphere comes from a mix of the two Penumbra games and Ever 17 (the latter of which was done by one of the same writers as 999).

Zeth wrote:
That having been said, I've already noted that you've written extensive backstory for one and it's simply not apparent in the game

Actually, they all have fairly lengthy backstories in the world bible. Except for Dr. Whiskers. He just gets a paragraph explaining that he's the decedent of a cat used in a junction-related experiment by Erwin Schrödinger.

Speaking of underdeveloped characters, I'd actually like to add a few scenes that trigger when you walk into rooms where other characters are together and you get to overhear the conversations between them. Some of Travis's personality, for example, would shine a little brighter if he were interacting with someone other than his mother.

Zeth wrote:
The only thing that really bothered me about the story, which I mentioned already, was the ending.

One huge hurdle for me in doing this game is that I have a natural inclination to want huge, dramatic final battles played out on epic set pieces. In a point-and-click adventure game that's kind of hard to do because you don't have "bosses" in the traditional sense.

(Speaking of 999, I find it hilarious that that game's
Spoiler: show
final boss is a Sudoku puzzle.


Zeth wrote:
Spoiler: show
...thinly alluded to massive invasionary force.

You're actually supposed to see
Spoiler: show
the invasion force behind him in the ending,
but I was really hurrying to get this build out because I didn't feel anything was working and I really wanted feedback ASAP before I burned out completely. Since I didn't know if I'd keep that in the story, I didn't bother mocking up the graphics or adding the code to do it.

Zeth wrote:
...if I wanted to do that [...] I'd just live my everyday life.

This is my philosophy on entertainment in general.

Zeth wrote:
I suck at designing puzzles

I do too, so don't ask me how the one big game I ever finished was a puzzle game. As time has gone on, I've tried to think of the game's interactions less as puzzles and more as reasons to just explore and interact with the world. Whether or not this was the prudent course of action remains to be seen.

Zeth wrote:
Spoiler: show
I next to never had to use the Take feature and so it just never occurred to me to try taking the poster.

That's actually one of my favorite puzzles in the game, but I will admit it's a little counter-intuitive. Whether it survives to the final game, only time will tell.

Zeth wrote:
Spoiler: show
The cipher machine red herring and obviously ciphered notebooks you can find on the storage shelves in the warehouse while searching for safehouse clues kept me occupied waaaaay longer than it probably was intended to.

I'm not sure I ever made the connection between the two, but I can see how one could get stuck on that. Both elements were added independently.

Zeth wrote:
I think this was the Rusty Old Truck of the game for me, though worth noting is that said truck gave me no problems.

I like how this thread has suddenly turned "Rusty Old Truck" into a meaningful phrase.

Zeth wrote:
I was less impressed by the character art, which, although good, just didn't feel right. It jarred with the suspenseful feel of the story, I think. That style suggests happier tones and atmospheres to me, with the large, soft eyes and whatnot.

Not sure how much I can change about this. It's just the style I'm most comfortable with. Out of curiosity, how would say the character graphics differ here from, say, 999? (Speaking of 999's character designs, there's no way in hell Clover is 18. Oh~, Japan.)

Zeth wrote:
David had that sort of magenta-y pink text colour and Kris's was that mellow green.

David's is supposed to match his jacket. Kris's is green because... I don't remember. Probably because her eyes are green. None of the colors are final, and I'm not sure they're staying. They were added on a whim because Crystal said she couldn't tell the characters' speech apart (thought this was before the characters had mouth/eye animation).

Zeth wrote:
Also, going back to
Spoiler: show
Pontier: I looked at that character art you posted earlier in this thread and was really intrigued by how much he seemed to have in common with the sketched Slider.
This is probably entirely coincidental.

It is a coincidence. That said, there is a slight connection between the two that the game does not currently hint at, but will if
Spoiler: show
Pontier and Adrian
survive the cutting board.
Spoiler: show
If you'll recall at the beginning of the game when Waechter first appears, he says that the junction appeared suddenly and he was told to pick up Travis at school after you left for work. Pontier set this up purposefully to separate you from Travis, intending for the sliders to take the boy. He then planned to double-cross the sliders and take Travis for himself so that he would have an indigo child and the power to open junction gates without the direct oversight of Majestic-12 or you and Adrian.
Most of this ties into the unwritten memory segments.

Zeth wrote:
...and then everything was just
Spoiler: show
solved by a magic child and the threat was over.

While I don't disagree that the ending needs work, I do have to ask whether or not you got the glitched version of
Spoiler: show
the second memory. The way Adrian and Serenity deal with the monster specifically foreshadows the ending.
I ask because another tester was very positive about the connection between the two events.

Zeth wrote:
I mean I hate to say that because I liked this game, but, well, yeah. Honesty is the best policy for building a good game, right?

Don't feel bad. I want honest feedback. Doing nothing but gushing doesn't make my work better.

Zeth wrote:
It might be nice if you had a little letter at the corner of the ability icons to indicate the hotkeys--I didn't think to even try them till about 3/4 of the way through the game. But yeah. No real problems here.

Um... I'd actually forgotten there were hotkeys until you mentioned it just now. There will be a help section in the notebook explaining them. I don't really want to have letter keys obscuring the icons.

But speaking of obscuring the icons, did you know that you can play the game with an Xbox 360 controller? Though you can't finish it that way since the interface has changed dramatically over the course of the game's development. It was originally bound for the Xbox Live Indie Games channel when that was still a thing. (Imagine me shaking my fists at Microsoft here.) The current build of the game doesn't even use XNA anymore.

Zeth wrote:
I really really liked the fact that various characters retained their general state of emotion at a given time even when you aren't directly interacting with them.

I'm glad this didn't go unnoticed after I went through the trouble to code it.

Zeth wrote:
Spoiler: show
Chocolate cake breakfast option. In a game about playing yourself in a questionable reality. There needs to be a Portal reference here.

Actually, it's a reference to
Spoiler: show
an old Bill Cosby routine: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ZlCPQur4hc. Travis even sings the little song to you later after he finishes breakfast.


Zeth wrote:
Waechter's dismissal of
Spoiler: show
“strictly speaking, a dimension is something entirely” had me practically in joyous tears.

For the little game that it is, I really put a lot of effort into trying to research everything and make it come across as naturally and accurately as possible.
Spoiler: show
I even looked up distance finders online to make sure that specific puzzle was possible, even if only in theory.
Being a perfectionist I'm also a stickler for correctness, so I felt I had to bring the whole "dimension" thing up somewhere.

Zeth wrote:
It was weird that earlier on Waechter kept saying “especially for situations like this”

He uses that phrase multiple times? I hadn't noticed, to be honest.

Zeth wrote:
I was highly amused when
Spoiler: show
Waetcher's body disappeared and just his facial features were talking to me, floating, as he was talking about emotions and expectations distorting reality and how he doesn't want the kids panicking.

I couldn't stop laughing when I read this. I didn't encounter this bug when I was testing this build, so it may not be fixed in the current build. I'll try to reproduce it later and see what's up.

Zeth wrote:
Spoiler: show
Similar is the no trespassing sign you can only choose to ignore. That was a nice touch.

I couldn't think of any other interaction for that. The text
Spoiler: show
on the sign
was important enough that it needed to have a hotspot so that if the game were ever translated the text box could describe what it says.

dinowoman wrote:
I was also thinking after I'd posted my feedback that one possible way of handling all the dangling threads regarding the wider story might be to take another leaf out of Ace Attorney's book and have three or four relatively self-contained short games that work together to build up the whole picture (if Capcom didn't accuse you of nicking their ideas). It'd be a lot of work, I know, but it might be a nice long-term goal, and would bring the whole up to a length that would be easily long enough for a commercial venture.

The game is already in its fourth year of production, so I'm not sure making it three or four times the size will get it out the door. :P

I'll address the game's length in my next post when I reply to David, because I think I'm running out of room.


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PostPosted: 26 Mar 2013, 20:39 
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If you ever want it translated into German once it's a final build, I could do that.



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PostPosted: 26 Mar 2013, 21:57 
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Just took a look at the image links. I love the kitchen. That should look great inserted into the game. Of the other two, on the whole they look very good (I was trying to work out whether all the brown marks in the loo actually would be brown or whether some of them might be grey or blackish - especially on the walls if they're damp patches with mould - but I wasn't sure. The brown on the toilet itself looks most unsavoury, but is probably accurate :P), but I fancied the angle of the hole in the toilet seat wasn't quite right compared to the rest of the seat and the unit as a whole, and the perspective of the table in the hall scene also looked just a tad out of alignment compared to the floor. (Since it's closer to the viewer's eye level than the floor is, the angle of the lines from front to back should be shallower than those of the floor, but if anything they looked ever so slightly steeper.) But other than those two things I was impressed by those scenes as backgrounds for the game.

It was interesting to see Serenity's ID card. I hadn't picked up from the game that she's a photographer. Did I miss that somewhere?



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I rather like Serenity's Design now I see it; I was wondering how she was supposed to look, given that the only Reflections in the current Build are on Placeholder Backgrounds.



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DMAJohnson wrote:
One huge hurdle for me in doing this game is that I have a natural inclination to want huge, dramatic final battles played out on epic set pieces. In a point-and-click adventure game that's kind of hard to do because you don't have "bosses" in the traditional sense.

(Speaking of 999, I find it hilarious that that game's
Spoiler: show
final boss is a Sudoku puzzle.

Zeth wrote:
...if I wanted to do that [...] I'd just live my everyday life.

This is my philosophy on entertainment in general.
I'm glad we agree on all these points.

DMAJohnson wrote:
That's actually one of my favorite puzzles in the game, but I will admit it's a little counter-intuitive. Whether it survives to the final game, only time will tell.
Yeah, and I really hope it stays. Like I said a little later, I think the Notebook hints feature when finished could really clear up this section of the game.

DMAJohnson wrote:
I like how this thread has suddenly turned "Rusty Old Truck" into a meaningful phrase.
:zethchan:

DMAJohnson wrote:
Not sure how much I can change about this. It's just the style I'm most comfortable with. Out of curiosity, how would say the character graphics differ here from, say, 999? (Speaking of 999's character designs, there's no way in hell Clover is 18. Oh~, Japan.)
(No, she's definitely not. Actually, Ace, Jumpei and maybe June are the only characters who look their age, IMO. June is iffy.) Mm, this is a hard one to answer...I think mostly just because I don't know how to articulate things in this field. So I'm going to have to fall back on science. I guess, maybe, the difference between Junction!In-gameArt and 999!In-GameArt is the former has thicker, heavier lines that produce thicker, heavier features than the latter, which uses a wide gambit of heavy lines to fine lines to merely implied lines. Heavier, thicker features tend to illicit connotations of younger and more innocent individuals, because, well, basically babies have heavy thick features 'cause they're fat. Combine this with the fact that 999!Art uses lots of subtle gradients and shadowing, while Junction uses much more homogenous colour fields, again a distinction which causes Junction's look to be more simplistic and primary oriented, and thus younger and happier. There's also the facial anatomy shared by the characters owing to your style--and your Let's Draw videos make it somewhat apparent where this comes from: they all share very round features over all, and narrowing our focus to the face, they tend to have their facial features set lower on their face, making their foreheads large. Professor Waechter in particular demonstrates pretty well what Vsauce breaks down in this video about what evokes "cute" in the human brain. I noticed Pontier distinctly broke this whole pattern, and IMO is a good degree closer to fitting the mood of the game, and it fits still. His face is longer (only by a teeny bit, but still, human brains are highly adept at discerning faces), his forehead is smaller, and his agedness causes the deeply sunk eyes, cheeks and droop to the jaw to make his face appear more square. When I'm spriting, I have a tendency to use defined/highlighted zygomatic arches as a crutch to make my characters appear more age appropriate, because it removes a lot of the roundness that makes a face look younger while altering fundamentally little about the character (of course I abuse it, so that's my problem to fight). I notice Waechter has this feature even in spite of my using him as a primary example of being too cute. I think what he has working against him primarily is he's obviously a heavier set character. As far as rectifying him IMO, it would be a matter of facial trait distribution. All of his face is squished on the bottom of his head in a way an adult human's couldn't actually do. I would expect him to look something more like this, for example:
Image

It's not a perfect example, but you get the idea. All things considered, although I hardly expect you to redo all your character art, this is just how I see it. Your style is great, don't get me wrong. It's just not one I associate with this genre.

DMAJohnson wrote:
David's is supposed to match his jacket. Kris's is green because... I don't remember. Probably because her eyes are green. None of the colors are final, and I'm not sure they're staying. They were added on a whim because Crystal said she couldn't tell the characters' speech apart (thought this was before the characters had mouth/eye animation).
I had a hunch something like this was going on. You could consider simply matching everybody's text to their eyes for consistency. You could of course keep Ren's text the same as it is, since you only see her eyes once in long while.

DMAJohnson wrote:
Spoiler: show
If you'll recall at the beginning of the game when Waechter first appears, he says that the junction appeared suddenly and he was told to pick up Travis at school after you left for work. Pontier set this up purposefully to separate you from Travis, intending for the sliders to take the boy. He then planned to double-cross the sliders and take Travis for himself so that he would have an indigo child and the power to open junction gates without the direct oversight of Majestic-12 or you and Adrian.
Most of this ties into the unwritten memory segments.
I knew it.

DMAJohnson wrote:
While I don't disagree that the ending needs work, I do have to ask whether or not you got the glitched version of
Spoiler: show
the second memory. The way Adrian and Serenity deal with the monster specifically foreshadows the ending.
I ask because another tester was very positive about the connection between the two events.
No, I probably got the correct second memory; in retrospect the foreshadowing was very obvious, yes. I just don't think it absolved the ending. I mean yeah, I liked the foreshadowing, but I just felt like what I had spent the game doing was rendering meaningless because
Spoiler: show
Travis
solved everything so neatly.

DMAJohnson wrote:
Um... I'd actually forgotten there were hotkeys until you mentioned it just now. There will be a help section in the notebook explaining them. I don't really want to have letter keys obscuring the icons.
Well I didn't really mean to obscure the icons--your icons are too nice to look at to obscure. But a list in the notebook would be just as nice.

DMAJohnson wrote:
But speaking of obscuring the icons, did you know that you can play the game with an Xbox 360 controller? Though you can't finish it that way since the interface has changed dramatically over the course of the game's development. It was originally bound for the Xbox Live Indie Games channel when that was still a thing. (Imagine me shaking my fists at Microsoft here.) The current build of the game doesn't even use XNA anymore.
Yeah I noticed that rumble feature you had in the options. I approve. Of using a controller, that is. Of using Xbox as the platform I have to sniff down my nose at, but that's just me.

Speaking of features people don't know about, did anybody else note that there's a chapter selection menu once you beat the game? I know Les was saying she wished she could jump to a specific section of the game to see something again. I didn't try the feature, so I guess you'd have to confirm/deny this, Dale, but I imagine that's what that is for, right?

DMAJohnson wrote:
Zeth wrote:
I really really liked the fact that various characters retained their general state of emotion at a given time even when you aren't directly interacting with them.
I'm glad this didn't go unnoticed after I went through the trouble to code it.
This is too important and too quality not to notice.

DMAJohnson wrote:
Actually, it's a reference to
Spoiler: show
an old Bill Cosby routine: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ZlCPQur4hc. Travis even sings the little song to you later after he finishes breakfast.
Ha, I love that skit--my folks have it on VIDEO CASSETTE actually. Can't believe I didn't pick up on it.

DMAJohnson wrote:
For the little game that it is, I really put a lot of effort into trying to research everything and make it come across as naturally and accurately as possible.
Spoiler: show
I even looked up distance finders online to make sure that specific puzzle was possible, even if only in theory.
Being a perfectionist I'm also a stickler for correctness, so I felt I had to bring the whole "dimension" thing up somewhere.
Bless ya sir, bless ya.

-=-=-=-=-
Mm, I see Klarth posted while I was typing, and unfortunately I have to disgaree. I like her sketched appearance in the Let's Play video you posted a lot more than her mirror reflection image, to be honest. I actually really liked that title background a whole lot too, now that I brought it up.



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PostPosted: 27 Mar 2013, 06:22 
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Zeth wrote:
Speaking of features people don't know about, did anybody else note that there's a chapter selection menu once you beat the game? I know Les was saying she wished she could jump to a specific section of the game to see something again. I didn't try the feature, so I guess you'd have to confirm/deny this, Dale, but I imagine that's what that is for, right?

Oh yes! I'd forgotten that was there! I just went and tried it. It would have been perfect for what we were discussing yesterday (once I'd wasted time jumping to one chapter too early and then trying to make my way to where I wanted, only to find I couldn't move from there because I didn't have the
Spoiler: show
glowsticks
, before discovering the next chapter was exactly where I needed to be - I think you'd already have found what you were looking for by then. :P).

Actually, I'm not quite sure about the purpose of the chapter selection option because you arrive with some, but not all, of the equipment you'd have collected prior to getting there, so you can look around the area you're in, but not necessarily continue the game from there. When I jumped to chapter 3 I had no
Spoiler: show
glowsticks
, as I said, so the youngsters wouldn't let me leave, and the game wouldn't let me
Spoiler: show
switch the battery pack from the torch to the saw
, and when I jumped to chapter 4 I had the
Spoiler: show
pool net
but not the
Spoiler: show
hammer
, which I know is required later on in the game.



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PostPosted: 27 Mar 2013, 08:38 
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Haven't really read any of the thread yet but someone mentioned hot-keys? That would have been good to know.

Quote:
1. Do you normally play, or like to play, adventure games?
No, which is why I was so hesitant to do this. I'm glad I did, mostly.

2. What is your overall assessment of the game as it stands?
It's clearly a work in progress - I was kind of disappointed that there was no audio - but that doesn't even need to be said. I thought at first that the overall theming clashed with the aesthetics, but I changed my mind as I continued playing. The art style is charming, and the characterisation and dialogue is very believable. I especially liked the flashback segments.
I felt the pacing was also fairly strong, until I got stuck for twenty minutes
Spoiler: show
trying to open the garage door
. This is where I quit.

3. Gameplay aside, what are your thoughts on the story as a whole?
It's a little juvenile? I'm not sure that's the right word, but it's the same sort of plot you'd expect to find in an anime marketed at ages 16-17. The darkest moment in the whole thing was
Spoiler: show
that creepy shadow you can see in the collapsed tunnel
, and I only felt really mentally engaged when
Spoiler: show
they started talking about realities without physics and the implications of such a world intersecting with our own
.

4. Does it bother you that you're playing as a woman?
is this really a question

5. Does it bother you that the character you're playing as is not an AFGNCAAP but has some backstory and predefined relationships?
Not at all. I guess this probably matters for actual adventure game fans? Anyway, we were given plenty of leeway to express ourselves through dialogue so I don't see how anyone could complain.

6. How difficult are the puzzles? How could they be improved?
Mostly everything seemed to have a logical flow. I knew to
Spoiler: show
grab the chainsaw before I even checked the fallen branch, I unlocked the car almost the second the Professor said he had lost his ID
; the only things I couldn't figure out were
Spoiler: show
the bathroom cupboard and the garage door
. I might have if I had the patience to spend more time on it, but yeah.
(
Spoiler: show
What was up with the toilet paper anyway
)

7. Did you ever feel "lost" in the game and not know where to go next or what to do?
Just the once.

8. How are the (finished) graphics? Do they fit the gameplay and story?
Like I said, there's some initial dissonance: the art is very vibrant and stylised, but after a while that becomes the norm.

9. How are the non-player characters; what are your thoughts on them?
I fell in love with Travis quite easily, and the others were likeable enough. The teens were just irritating enough to be authentic, and on the whole there's a good dynamic of mixed personalities.
Spoiler: show
Picking on Adrian
was legitimately hearbreaking, but it made for good relationship development.

[s]10. How did you feel about the ending (if you reached it)?[/s]
x:

11. What was your favorite and least favorite aspects of gameplay?
I disliked the interface almost from the start: needing to click an action and then an object and then right clicking and then selecting another action before interacting with the object again - have I mentioned I'm not a fan of adventure games? It would have been nice if you could right-click to leave when inspecting items like
Spoiler: show
the circuit box
, instead of needing to select move and then 'go back'. Everything doesn't always have to be a federal fucking issue, you know?

I guess my favourite is kind of contradictory to my stance on adventure games, since it's pervasive throughout the genre: the ability to check every plant and light fixture just to be sure.

12. What was your favorite and least favorite parts of the story?
The sequence at the beginning
Spoiler: show
with the bathroom mirror was great; having Serenity give herself a pep talk to help her get through the day
was very endearing. I don't know that I had a least favourite part, but it might have been
Spoiler: show
sitting through the Prof's explanation on Junctions after I had just spent the last half hour learning about Junctions
.

13. Do you feel this game is commercially viable?
Sure.

14. How much do you think the game should sell for? How much would you be willing to pay?
$15 seems like a pretty comfortable marker but you might be able to aim higher. That's about what I'd be comfortable paying, anyway.


lol i have no idea what was worth spoilering


EDIT: ooooohhhhhhhhhhh

EDIT EDIT: I didn't get much further before I got stuck again, but I'll come back to it later. Not going to come crawling back to the thread for answers every time I can't figure something out F:

Quote:
The darkest moment in the whole thing was
Spoiler: show
that creepy shadow you can see in the collapsed tunnel

Also I take that back. This was the creepiest part of the game.



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PostPosted: 27 Mar 2013, 10:27 
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Myke wrote:
This was the creepiest part of the game.
Ah! That's clearly the same thing Ethan had. I didn't get that. Must have chosen a different option somewhere along the line.

Also, with all the talk about Adrian, I'm beginning to wish I'd seen the flashback properly. Do I recall an offer of a transcript of that somewhere earlier in this thread?



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PostPosted: 27 Mar 2013, 10:52 
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dinowoman wrote:
Do I recall an offer of a transcript of that somewhere earlier in this thread?


If you go into the Junction game directory, there's a folder called "Text" or something to that effect. You'll find a file called "memories.data" somewhere in there. It's just a standard text file and you can open it up in Notepad (or the corresponding Mac/Linux application). It doesn't show what line is assigned to who or what their facial expressions are, but all the lines are there and are kept in relative order. Some of my notes are still in there too, so that should make it easier to follow. As needed, I can transcribe the conversation here with the lines attributed to their speakers.

Also, I'm not sure how many people caught on, but how you choose to
Spoiler: show
respond to Adrian in the very first memory when he asks you to be his friend will alter bits in every other memory and interaction with him after that point. How he reacts to finding you in the second memory is especially noticeable if you told him you didn't like him. It's actually a little sweet in a twisted sort of way, because after you help him he comes to assume that you are his arch-rival and gets excited. He'll will even refer to you as his "greatest rival" in the ending.



Thanks to everyone that has played the game so far--even if you didn't finish. You're more help than you realize. And again, please don't forget to list the name you wish to be credited under, even if it's just your username. I need to start coloring a background now, but I'll come back and address more of the replies later today.


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