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Muncha

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A bunch of the material items stacking = awesome. Makes a huge difference to the inventory management stuff. The locked inventory slots etc. are interesting. I take it there's nothing implemented for unlocking them yet?

 

A few object placement glitches here and there. A small end table that was half in a wall. Wellies leaning through walls or doors that they're trying to open, that kind of thing. At one point all of the wellies were facing one direction and not moving (this was probably after I'd be wandering around for a good half hour). Then later there were no wellies around, but a bunch of what looked like floating baseball bats.

 

I can't remember if this was in before, but walking around on the colourful roads with the mist and walking through the central circular area with the hatch was a really cool effect. The entire aesthetic is still really striking even after this many hours of wandering around.

 

Did the whole loot-hoover through a few buildings, killed a few wellies with a frying pan, the usual. Came across the two red bobbies guarding a hatch and got thoroughly pounded when I tried to get a closer look... Interesting. Only got a prompt to open and it said locked, no option to unlock so I assumed something else was needed. Tried to press F on it which resulted in me just instead trying to eat my emergency yam, which was actually kinda terrifying when you're not expecting it.

 

Managed to get into the chiller above the butchers this time. Got the rolling pin and went on a bit of a spree with it.

 

One UI thing I've noticed is that I'm still double clicking on recipes to try and craft them. Not entirely sure what that comes from, but seems something I'm pretty well trained to do.

 

I also found myself eating any food that I found in the cupboards straight away when my inventory was full. Perhaps having the right-click-to-eat ability on food (or just use on items) that aren't in your inventory would be helpful?

 

The tendency of NPCs to turn and run for it when they're hurt is interesting. They do seem to charge straight through locked doors, perhaps they could hesitate at them for a second before opening them? That would give a little bit of an advantage to carefully setting up a fight. It also seemed like there wasn't much consequence for one of them getting away. I just shut the door behind and carried on with my day.

 

Laughed out loud when I tried to jump over the barricade and one of the red suited bobbies looked at me and said 'Bloody kangaroo!'.

 

Found the workman's suit, got myself the bits to make the pipe hammer, waited until dark and killed the bobbies. Once I got closer to the hatch, it only had the open (locked) use prompt. When I went around behind it, the unlock prompt became available. I'm not sure exactly whether I picked up something after my first attempt which made it possible to unlock. Perhaps the workman's outfit?

 

Either way, the exit is a great addition. It feels like it should need a selection of items to access (similar to Don't Starve's door). I didn't get any further through the game time-wise than day 2 night so I don't know about anything further along like a time limit.

 

I feel like there is enough food around and I've kind of got the hang of the joy mechanic to the point where food/water is never an issue.

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Oh, and as for performance:

 

i7-3770 with 8GB RAM and a Radeon HD7850. Running on a 1920x1200 monitor.

 

Was originally a little clunky at times, but mostly ran well. A little bit of screen tearing. The mouse felt a little odd and 'floaty'. Possibly sensitivity varying with framerate?

 

Now, very smooth, no issues at all. Mousing around feels better, although that could easily just be the smoother framerate.

 

Dunno if that's a mid or high end setup, but at the very least it's a positive data point!

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@Muncha Glad to hear it about the performance! It was one of the major pushes we made on the last update, as the build was beginning to run slowly even on our dev machines. Performance will likely go up and down all the way through development, but any time it becomes unplayable, we'd love to hear about it.

 

In response to your other points:

  • Unlockable slots: no, we don't have items in for this yet. The idea is that slots will become unlockable throughout a playthrough, but you'll have to craft upgrades to do it.

Misplaced objects/floating weapons: this is actually two issues. The misplaced houses/objects is a known issue in the world generation - we have an entire new system planned for building placement, so we're holding off on addressing this for now. The floating weapons: this is a bug in our "liveness" manager that we haven't fixed yet. Basically, we can't spawn all of the AIs in the city at once, as it uses a huge amount of processing power to keep them going. So, as you get far enough away from them, we store them for later use. However, if you've pissed them off, and run out of range, we haven't stored their items... so they're just despawning, and the things they are holding end up hovering in mid air, untouchable. Hurray for bugs!

Aesthetic: thank you, most of it was there but it wasn't laid out as nicely. The next update will be an even bigger improvement, as it won't just be The Village any more (at least, that is if we complete what we want to complete).

Emergency Yam: amazing, sent that comment back to our emergency yam programmer/designer. It's good feedback though, thank you. Next update, we're going to change the controls so that quickslots and secondary interactions aren't on the same button - that's in our nightly build as of today.

The Hatch: glad you like it! You can actually finish the game, ie be taken back to the main menu. If you're not there yet, you still have things to find :)

Recipes: thanks, sounds like a good idea to me, I have passed that on. Camille might have concerns about it, we will see.

Food/water: good to know, feels similar to me. We'll have to balance this later, according to the overarching meta goals in the game, but it's better to err on the side of generous for now, I think.

 

What do you think would add to the game the most right now? (Gameplay wise.) Obviously we have our plans, but I'd like to know what people want to see the game, even at this early stage.

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I did get back to the main screen, but I'm a little confused as to what exactly changed in order for me to be able to do it. I'll have another wander through to see if I can do it piece-by-piece.

 

I'm really interested to see how the world will look when fleshed out with more architecture type stuff. Both exterior and interior variations but also any unique blocks like the courtyards with the hatches. Obviously that's a more long-term goal, but it's something I'm looking forward to, nonetheless.

 

I've been thinking a bit about the house internals and trap layouts etc. I think there are good possibilities there for setting up some really interesting dynamics within the game. Having 'higher tier' crafting ingredients that can only be obtained out of things like safes or locked rooms in 'unique' buildings gives the opportunity to have a progression that goes from scavenging in trash cans to robbing houses to disabling traps and safe cracking. This is kind of how the narrative in my head works when I play as well, it's kind of a rising desperation leading to more outrageous actions.

 

Having more advanced traps that can't be avoided and require crafted items in order to be disabled would give an interesting spin on things as well. It gives you the option of triggering the trap and trying to evade the resulting mess or having to do the work to create the trap disabling items and take the safer route.

 

Having more internal layouts with different room, trap and furniture configurations etc. would add a lot to the gameplay loop of robbing houses for materials/food.

 

Having a system that encourages more caution with regard to dispatching wellies would also be a cool opportunity. Something along the lines of having to hide the bodies to avoid having another occupant come home and raise the alarm. Alarms being set off or missing persons could slowly raise some form of paranoia (people on the street commenting about there being a downer on the loose, etc.) which results in faster alarm response, wellies fleeing earlier in a fight, quicker transitions from curiosity to suspicion to aggression (any better terms for the white, yellow, red symbols?), wellies having a larger hearing radius, more bobbies etc. This could mean that you're forced to rob houses instead of loot trash cans and could also give a natural arc to a playthrough where the stakes get higher as time goes on. Given that you've mentioned a fixed timeframe, that could just as easily be a fixed curve by day.

 

If the goal is to escape the town within a certain time frame, from a replayability standpoint, it would be neat to have multiple ways of doing that. It could be either all in the one game so you can do it in a self-directed or have one randomly chosen as the objective for that playthrough, which I prefer the idea of. The actual objective itself could be handled such that you might have to complete sub objectives in order to find out what you have to do next, to avoid just going on a collection rampage until you've got everything you might need. For the 'open the hatch' objective, this could be things like the hatch being guarded, requiring stronger weapons to kill or incapacitate the guards, the hatch being locked requiring a particular key or lockpick, the hatch being damaged/jammed and requiring a specific tool or some explosives to open. Stuff like that, perhaps.

 

Also, secrets. I'm sure there has to be a hidden compartment or room somewhere around the playground!

 

I'm sure I'm covering a lot of ground you've already thought of, but hopefully there's something useful in that mess.

 

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@Muncha interesting - well, the answer is that there are three things that you find in the world, that allow you to pass through the exit. The screen should have gone all white at the end.

 

Yeah, working on the art. What we're doing is focusing on the core pieces for each biome first, to get the art style and our pipeline fleshed out, and then over time we'll be adding more variation.

 

Houses etc: agreed. That's the plan - we just don't have that higher level loot yet :)

 

Traps: on the way!

 

Internal layouts: agreed completely. There's more to it, because the external layout and filler systems will affect gameplay even more, but the layouts will come over time.

 

Caution: yes, it's entirely too lackadaisical right now (always thought that word had an s, turns out, nope). We've focused a lot recently on individual suspicion reactions, and combat, but it's good feedback that we need to take more time looking at AI reactions to more random things. Having said that, much of this exists right now, but just isn't tuned that well.

 

Escape: noted, interesting ideas on the jimmying etc. The goal of the game ties into the world narrative quite a bit, so we don't have as much room to experiment on that, but if it all goes well, you should hopefully be pleasantly surprised.

 

Secrets: YES. @Joshua.

 

P.S. you can now double click to craft in our daily build!

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That is glorious! Looking forward to the double-click :)

 

Yeah, I'm sure none of that is new but I'm happy just musing away, even if it's only to myself!

 

A few more UI thoughts: I accidentally used a bandage for no reason when trying to lock a door in a hurry, kind of a waste. Perhaps lock/unlock could be changed to a long press on E or the quick-slot could always be a long press on F? Might kind of void the idea of a quick-slot?

 

2 unit high items are currently a little fiddly to put in the quick-slot positions, seems like there are some issues with pointer positions? Same thing with moving around multi-unit items. Perhaps they could 'snap' to the nearest appropriate position a little bit?

 

Also, I've noticed that if you hit craft and then change your selection before it finishes then it crafts your current selection, not the original selection from when craft was pressed.

 

The E to open, E to take all items is great for rapidly hoovering up loot and gives a cool 'hurriedly looting' feeling, but it gets a little more awkward once the inventory starts to fill and I'm trying to be a little more selective. Once that happens, I start going E, esc if there's nothing I want, E, E if I want everything or E, I if it's just one thing. I was wondering about having E be open/close, F be loot all and I be inventory. Pressing loot-all could still close the window. I've also noticed that a few times I've seen things go past and haven't noticed that I didn't pick them up. Perhaps loot-all shouldn't close the window unless everything has been taken?

 

Another useful thing would be if storage locations could also have an (opened) suffix if you've checked them but haven't cleared them out?

 

Also, amusingly, the hair on one of the female models seems to move differently to the head, so the model appears to be wearing a poorly fitting wig when being hit. Adds a touch of hilarity to casually beating a wellie to death with a pipe...

 

I just managed to unlock the hatch with nothing but the lead pipe equipped. I had to stand off to the side a bit to get the prompt... Had to go back up and come back with a lockpick to get through the next door (I noticed you can loot a bobby pin down there, just needs a workbench handy, too) but doing that got through to the 'whiteout' screen at the end.

 

Given that in my previous exit I had to stand off to the side, I'm guessing that I may not have had the required items, it may have just been a bug.

 

 

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Hey Muncha! Again, very good insights.

 

I accidentally used a bandage for no reason when trying to lock a door in a hurry, kind of a waste. Perhaps lock/unlock could be changed to a long press on E or the quick-slot could always be a long press on F? Might kind of void the idea of a quick-slot?

 

That's been bothering us for a while too, the contextual use/secondary interaction was meant to curtail button usage on the controller, but it was troublesome for the reasons you brought up. I did consider adding a small hold period for using the quick slot, but as of this writing, we went with separate inputs for secondary interaction and quickslot.

 

 

 

2 unit high items are currently a little fiddly to put in the quick-slot positions, seems like there are some issues with pointer positions? Same thing with moving around multi-unit items. Perhaps they could 'snap' to the nearest appropriate position a little bit?

 

That's a bit tricky. Due to various reasons, item dragging is handled by cursor location rather than the actual rectangle of the item. The drag location is in the centre of the top left (0,0) grid slot of multiple slot items. So in the case of multiple slot items being dragged into a single slot quickslot, that means the item has to be dropped by its top left location rather than its centre. It'd be fairly complicated to polish, so it's on the backlog for me until we're absolutely certain about item sizes, quickslot functionality, etc.

 

But for the main grid, which is always larger than dragged items, this problem shouldn't be nearly as apparent...

 

 

 

Also, I've noticed that if you hit craft and then change your selection before it finishes then it crafts your current selection, not the original selection from when craft was pressed.

 

Whoops. Fixed. :)

 

 

 

The E to open, E to take all items is great for rapidly hoovering up loot and gives a cool 'hurriedly looting' feeling, but it gets a little more awkward once the inventory starts to fill and I'm trying to be a little more selective. Once that happens, I start going E, esc if there's nothing I want, E, E if I want everything or E, I if it's just one thing. I was wondering about having E be open/close, F be loot all and I be inventory. Pressing loot-all could still close the window. I've also noticed that a few times I've seen things go past and haven't noticed that I didn't pick them up. Perhaps loot-all shouldn't close the window unless everything has been taken?

 

The initial design was similar -- E to open/close loot containers, Space to loot all. When testing, I was basically rifling through a handful of containers at once, just pointing each one in turn and hitting E. No need to even close the previous container if you're just targeting a new one. And then walk away to close the window instead of forcing another input.

 

That was changed because hitting E, then E again to loot all felt more natural for most people. Given this control scheme, you're right that there could be a closer button to close inventory, while retaining ESC as the catch-all "please close this damn thing".

 

Full inventory loot will remain on tab though, that's the catch-all contextual player menu button. Depending on what the latest relevant menu-based event occurred, Tab (gamepad Back/Select) is supposed to bring up the appropriate player submenu (i.e.: new status effect goes to status, new craftable item goes to crafting, loot goes to inventory, etc.). You can still bring up the inventory using I while looting.

 

But all of this will depend on where take looting next, as right now it's a bit repetitive. Bethsoft games like Skyrim, Fallout, etc. have a lot of this meaningless container looting, and while they get away with it, it's not exactly fun gameplay. I personally think it's still a massive improvement from Bethsoft's full screen looting menu, in that you still have control of your character and it makes looting more of a snap decision when container contents are limited to 0-2 items.

 

 

 

Another useful thing would be if storage locations could also have an (opened) suffix if you've checked them but haven't cleared them out?

 

The goal is to have the container model itself be visibly ajar if it's already been looted. Fridges behaved this way for a little bit, we just haven't gotten around to making all the mesh variants necessary for it. Again, it'll depend on the direction of looting.

 

 

 

Also, amusingly, the hair on one of the female models seems to move differently to the head, so the model appears to be wearing a poorly fitting wig when being hit. Adds a touch of hilarity to casually beating a wellie to death with a pipe...

 

This is a problem with all NPC attachments, really. Something about attachments on ragdoll simulations seems to be updating one frame late, so attachments will always be "catching up" a bit for more extreme ragdoll motions. This is an engine issue, not exactly looking forward to ironing that out.

 

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