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Topics - Xanirus

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(I know Mantis is there for suggestions/bug reports, but because I'm being a bit broad, I feel having to open multiple entries seems a bit monotonous.  Plus, I'm curious as to what others would think.  Also, sorry for the wall of text.)

I can honestly say that I've never enjoyed a platformer/shooter like Valley 2 in such, such a long time.  While I do wish there was some more in-depth RPG elements into it, from playing the game I understand that wasn't the goal of this game and doing so might make the game too easy.  I guess I only feel that way because the enjoyment I got out of Valley 2 was so much better than Valley 1 it just made me wish the first game was just as good in it's own strengths.  I've been a long time player of Valley 1, playing in the game's beta ever since it first appeared on Steam, being a sucker for randomly generated worlds.  I enjoyed it even more when the major game-progression changes were made, and I still pick it up every now and then, even if I'm among-st the only one of my friends who enjoys it.   :( 

What caught me by surprise was that the opening track on the main menu had vocals to go with it.  But the static scrolling background just doesn't seem to do it justice.  When I listen to the song, I'm imagining the opening to an epic fantasy movie or something, a bunch of travelers embarking on a journey, or <insert random fantasy anime series opening here.>  If perhaps there were some people walking around doing things, with maybe scrolling pictures of the various character artwork, I think it would be a nice touch.

Also, I find that a lot of games tend to play a vocal version of a theme song that a player has heard a lot in the game, and a lot of the time it gives it more meaning, and the game can become pretty much identified from that song alone.  For AVWW, I think that song is the one that plays in the intro and world map in Valley 1, and the day-time visits to grassy tiles in Valley 2.  (Sorry, don't know the name, if it has one.)  I've never heard such an addicting theme in a while that wasn't typical dramatic war music or heavy metal.  (Not that I don't like those, but still.)  I know that this might be a large request, but I think that it would complement that song (not to mention totally awesome) if a vocal version was made, and to have it played at the game's end credits as closure.

The Strategic Game

All in all, the strategic part of the game feels perfect...once I got the hang of it.  There are a few things I think that I should mention:

*Make it possible to switch two resistance member positions.  (Providing they are of sufficient distance.)  If both members can theoretically be in each other's previous tile, it seems strange that you can only have one move there since one has to move out of the way to begin with.

*When choosing which building to build, the message "Cannot build, no resistance member is here" is displayed.  This is fine, but only this message is displayed, not the description or function of the building.  For first timers it would be nice to know what buildings will do in the first place without having to use a turn getting a resistance member prepped to build it, only to find out it's not what you thought it would do.

*Citadel descriptions should be reworded, as I had trouble with knocking them down.  "Go on foot and smash the panel" should actually be changed to just "purifying" the area, since there is no actual citadel building in the actual area.  (Maybe that's how it was, and the description was left unchanged?)  Also, after so many instances of using a resistance members to attack impasses from adjacent tiles, (making it so you can purify and pass it) I did the same thing with the citadels, only to find out that for this building they actually have to stand on that tile instead.  This should be mentioned somewhere in the game.

The Action/Platforming Game

*Quick bug - If the player holds the "down" direction as they walk of a ledge (walk off, not jump off) they can peform a jump in mid-air as they fall, even if they don't have any advanced jumping feats yet.

*Suggestion to make an optional toggle to use "down + jump" to jump down through a platform instead of just pushing "down."  This would help aiming at enemies below you instead of having to jump up all the time.

The platforming bits is probably the best part of the game.  I almost feel like I'm playing a never ending Mario game.  The generation and layout of the levels are much better.  The interiors are shorter, sometimes mandatory to go through, and mostly having an actual end, instead of having a long line of endless buildings to explore where you "might" find something good.

While I understand the levels are designed for you to just "get to the end" the thing is a lot of the levels seem to have branching paths.  This is all well and good, but there's no point to them.  Sometime I'll go down a cave and there's nothing but enemies in there, and I'm already at full health, so there's no point in me going there.  This is where the random equipment chests come in, but I can't help but feel I wish there was more......"stuff" to collect.

What "stuff" though, I couldn't tell ya.  A lot of things come to mind, mostly powerups from other 8/16-bit games.  The perk system makes your character pretty customize-able, and we have a least one "armor" slot that can give random properties.  Those are static bonuses, so I guess what I'm looking for are items that pop-up once in a while that can give "temporary" bonuses, (anything more static that we can add to our own character might just break the design/difficulty and might linger towards the first game) such as a 30-second duration or until the end of the stage.  Invincibility power-ups, a full-life powerup, additional weapons (although that'd be hard considering the variety of spells you have) anything to add spice to the side-scrolling bits.  (Or even mercenary coins, as the rate you get them are rather slow, I've only ever got to use them once.)  These items could be objects to collect that you randomly find, and/or from enemies, giving a reason to engage them other than just to collect health.

And then...there's....score.  I might be in a minority here.....but I actually like score.  Yes, I know score in today's games is useless, but I can't really be the only one that is getting a Contra drive from playing this game, and Valley 2 is really a harken back to platformers back then, wouldn't anyone agree?  Any time I see a group of enemies bunched up, I feel like Pac Man who just ate a power pellet, and it's time to nom nom.  Still, I'm trying to see what good score would do in a game like this, and what possible rewards the player could get for acheveing a certain point value.  Points could also be added to building structures, purifying tiles, recruiting new members, etc.  Then, at the end of the game, there could be a displayed report of everything you did with a final score at the end.

Going back to the Contra thing, I didn't mention killing enemies for points because being able to repeat levels to infinity and racking that score up could be pointless.  In this case, maybe a separate Arcade game mode could be made for this purpose?  The level work is pretty much done, so I think adding bosses every few levels, and probably tweak the way the player gains levels/perks and there you go.  (I know this was mentioned in on Mantis, but I can't seem to find it anymore.)

And finally, my last bit for the night, I had a question about the ending....so....

SPOILER START

I feel like I missed out on the ending.  When I went to examine Demonanica's body, for some reason I kept hearing a noise as I was reading.  It was my character being hit.  Demonanica's body just happened to of fallen right next to a shooting statue, and apparently the text was just an overlay and the "game" was still active.  So this sound kept repeating over and over and finally I heard the big death sound but the text still continued.  The last words I saw were "...just because you can't see me, doesn't mean I'm not here."  (Which is kinda strange since I had just seen Elder walking around the world map prior to my last visit to the keep.)  Then the screen turns back to the game, I respawn in the training area......and that's it.  No congratulations from resistance members, or anything like that.  Did the game skip it?  Did that glitch skip the credits or the remaining cutscene?  Was there a post-end game goal not explained to me?  (There doesn't seem to be anything to do at this point.) 

SPOILER END





Wow, ok, sorry for the wall of text, I'm hoping at least someone will read.

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A Valley Without Wind 1 & 2 / Citadels - Did I do anything?
« on: March 03, 2013, 09:50:07 PM »
So I finally purify a Citadel, so I jump right in and, as the description says "go in on foot and smash the control panel."

Well, I went in, and died pretty quick.  (Also contray to the warning, you only seem to need double jump for this.)  For whatever reason, this somehow caused Demonica to cast storm over the tile, I don't even think this used up a turn, don't know if this has to do with anything.  The second time, I made it to the end, but I never saw any citadel, though I mostly stayed above the level and just tried to get to the end since it was pretty hard.  All that happened was that I reached the end of the level, and that was it.  Nothing to destroy, no message, nothing.  The third time I gave my self as many extra hearts as I could, and tried to explore the underground caverns as well.  Nothing.  The level is just like any purified level, just really really hard.

Did I do it, as is there just no actual panel for me to smash, is it "just get to the end?"  Or am I missing something?  If I actually have to send in resistance members "first," and THEN go on foot, I think the description of the tile needs re-wording, because the order is opposite.

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I'm having a little trouble being able to predict world map monster moves.  (If they are supposed to be at all.)  For example, what does "X moves" mean when you highlight them?  Is this the number of tiles they can move per turn, or how many turns they can do before disappearing from the map?  (If a resistance member hasn't killed them off already.)  Also, can enemies move in diagonals?

Also, what do the red flashing tiles indicate?  Is this their attack pattern, like the direction they will move on the next turn?  (In other words, don't have any allies standing on a flashing tile on next turn or they will fight.)  I don't see how this is accurate all the time because once I saw the red tiles going in a complete circle, so it just confused me.  As for Demonica, I've also seen him/her targeting his/her own fortress, so then it made me think it was a where they moved from on their previous turn instead.

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A Valley Without Wind 1 & 2 / Valley 2 - Farms
« on: February 22, 2013, 04:19:49 AM »
I seem to be at an impasse.  (Literally, not in-game  :P)  My farm has recently been destroyed, and I don't see any other way of rebuilding it or building another one somewhere.  The only tiles that seem suitable for farming is the one type of tile, of which there is only one of in the entire map.  (Of the tutorial at least, I haven't played a normal game yet, nor haven't played far enough to see Demonica release, I kept restarting trying to learn the game.)  I do have a lot of resistance members and a surplus of food, but I doubt they can scavenge enough food for very long.  Am I stuck?

I think the problem too is that despite the randomization, the farm tile in the tutorial will always be three tiles close to Demonica's castle, a bit close for a first time game.

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A Valley Without Wind 1 & 2 / Overlord Difficulty
« on: August 03, 2012, 03:17:30 PM »
This has been my first time encountering an overlord since the major changes, and, well, he really does feel like an overlord now.  But really, twice the level of the continent?  I normally play the game on skilled but I had to tone it down all the way to the easiest difficulty just to make it the Overlord zone manageable, (not to mention I had 3 ghosts and one bee boss in one of the rooms in a very confined area, wasn't very fun) and I felt like there was nothing I could do about it.  For whatever reason on my list of "Things to do" I had "get two ranged spells to level 6," even though I already did.  I knew I couldn't get any better enchants as the continent was as high as it was going to get already, and a lot of my spells were level 6 as well.  I took it slowly, keeping my distance for the regular enemies, but bosses in the tower?  Ouch.  Was I missing something, something I could of done to make it easier?  (Other than the difficulty.)

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A Valley Without Wind 1 & 2 / Missions that give Wind Shelters?
« on: July 31, 2012, 06:17:36 AM »
I've been gone from this game for a few months and finally coming back to it completely excited about the new changes.  I don't seem to be doing anything for nothing anymore, like exploring or doing missions etc. but I do have a concern, and that's mainly the rarity of wind shelters.  While certainly a lot better than having to have the right characters to be able to use those scrolls to begin with, I'm having a bit trouble, well, FINDING them in the first place.  I've started a new game, up to Level 4 now, and really only had one mission give a shelter as a reward.  I've been forced to buy over 6 shelters already, and still require more just to get to the fourth lieutenant, let alone the overlord.  This has been a very time consuming process with the low amount of shards enemies give at this level.  Considering the price of 9,000 each, and enemies only giving an average of 25 shards ea, I'm pretty sure shelters are meant to be bought as a last resort, but the way my game has been going it's the only way to get them.  Going through higher level caves helps somewhat, but enemies tend to be a bit more scarce.  Is this supposed to be normal?  Is there a trick to finding missions that give shelters?

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A Valley Without Wind 1 & 2 / Shield Question and Suggestion
« on: May 12, 2012, 06:09:41 PM »
First the question, I only noticed this last night, we have a stat called "Shielding from Continent Tier."  Mine says 55.5%.  What is this exactly?

And a suggestion for shields in general.  I'm finding it a little hard to even bother with them.  (I think others have said the same thing.)  I have them on a separate ability bar so I can quickly activate via R then switch back, but the drain is a bit much.  It's either turn a shield on and don't attack, or don't use it at all.  What I suggest is that instead of having them drain mana, have them take a percentage from your capacity, more commonly known as a maintain requirement spell in other games.  For instance if you have 100 mana, and the shield has a 20% maintain, your mana would stop regenerating at 80% for as long as you maintain the spell.

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A Valley Without Wind 1 & 2 / Rescuing Survivor Missions
« on: May 07, 2012, 01:50:23 PM »
Is there a trick to finding these missions easily?  I'm on T2 now, with no buildings, and I'm having extreme difficulty being able to use any scrolls that I find due to lack of survivors without the appropriate skills.  Even "Seek Survivor" scrolls are useless because they themselves require a certain profession my settlement is lacking.

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Game Development / Trash can!
« on: April 29, 2012, 08:58:00 AM »
Is there a way to throw away useless enhancers?  I'm assuming that inventory in this game is infinite, but I would'nt want a thousand icons to sort through either...

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AVWW Technical Support / Enemies - Only espers?
« on: April 28, 2012, 09:02:12 PM »
I'm finding that a lot of the enemies I'm facing are all espers.  Like, 90% of the time.  Do enemies change when the tier advances and I"m just spending too much time exploring and not doing missions, or did I bug something?  (Still on continent 1.)

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