Afterlife v1.7.2 released

News and updates about Afterlife: Rickard's Quest - please post any version-specific feedback, thoughts, comments, suggestions, ideas or bug-reports in the appropriate (or latest) release thread here!
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Filseld2000
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Afterlife v1.7.2 released

Post by Filseld2000 » July 5th, 2007, 6:41 pm

I'm actually really liking the ne idea with the health + ballon dodad, as i'm on off these people who found it really hard before hand, and with this addition, it easier for spass-ess like me to manage!!

Any news on Evowok (sorry,couldn't resist!!)
relax, we understand j00

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Fawful107
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Afterlife v1.7.2 released

Post by Fawful107 » July 5th, 2007, 6:41 pm

Apotheosis might be a bigger advantage, but adding the extra hearts in addition to apotheosis makes it easier to perfect an act than complete it, which completely defeats the purpose of the stars.

I'm sorry if I sound negative, I'm just very skeptical about this change.

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Fawful107
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Afterlife v1.7.2 released

Post by Fawful107 » July 5th, 2007, 6:41 pm

Ryan wrote: Collecting all of the mana balloons in an Act now regenerates the balloon's hearts.
Why did you do that? It makes perfecting an act exponentially easier, and there is no longer any distinction for completing the act without being hit. This doesn't seem like a good idea.

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Ryan
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Afterlife v1.7.2 released

Post by Ryan » July 5th, 2007, 6:41 pm

Fawful107 wrote:
Ryan wrote: Collecting all of the mana balloons in an Act now regenerates the balloon's hearts.
Why did you do that? It makes perfecting an act exponentially easier, and there is no longer any distinction for completing the act without being hit. This doesn't seem like a good idea.
I wondered if anyone would raise an eyebrow at that! :)

It was a tricky decision to make, but let me explain my reasons...

I originally considered implementing this system in the v1.7 release, but decided against it for the very reason that you mention: I wanted to retain the same difficulty for achieving Stars as in the previous version, while making standard completion of Acts easier, which seemed very elegant.

However, something that I've observed since the release of v1.7 while watching people play the game is that those who care about achieving perfect grades will simply exit and restart the level each time they are hit, essentially giving them the same rapid-fire spawn/die gameplay as from the previous one-hit-kills system. What I found myself wanting to see was more of a tense struggle, with failure possible right up until the last moments, and so I considered ways that this could be encouraged.

What I realised was that if a player spends some time playing a level, then gets hit once, they know they have failed and will exit and restart; but if they think that they still have a chance to achieve a Star, they are quite likely to play on and see where fate takes them. True, in some situations, this could make things easier, but as far as I've observed at least, a player good enough to be attempting perfect grades will generally be hit - if at all - either fairly early on in a level, through bad luck or a silly mistake; or towards the end of a level, when they are making a move to kill the last few hellion and exit.

In the former case, they still have most of the level to play, and probably only use the new feature to regain a single Heart; in the latter case, they are likely to have already collected all of the balloons anyway, and therefore not be able to use the regeneration ability. Therefore, in most circumstances, the game remains balanced, I think.

Of course, the regeneration ability can be exploited in order to make achieving Stars easier, but actually, I'm not overly concerned about that either, because in order to exploit it deliberately, a player first needs to know the level well enough to plan what order to collect the balloons, and what order to kill the hellion (on a first try, they will only know that they have collected the last balloon when it is already too late to reserve one for later). It's very much the mirror of the existing "leave one weak ghost alive until all balloons are collected" strategy that I'm sure everyone uses... :p

By the time a player is skilled enough and knows an Act well enough to plan their strategy in this way, I think that they deserve that Star, really! ;)

Also, the advantage isn't actually so massive in the greater scheme of things as it initially sounds: the fact of the matter is that once a player has collected a Realm's Crux, they will probably be going for all the balloons straight away anyway, in order to achieve Apotheosis, which is already a much bigger advantage than a couple of extra Hearts! :)

Finally, there are two extra advantages to the change: firstly, the mana balloons are now more integral to the game than before, and there's good reason for a player to collect them even if they aren't trying to achieve a perfect grade and don't have the Realm's Crux (which is something I always wanted to achieve); and secondly, if this change does introduce some small measure of extra ease in collecting Stars, I don't think that's necessarily a bad thing, as the upshot will be more people unlocking the level editor and posting new levels on the forums for everyone to enjoy, so everyone benefits. :)

Those are my reasons, anyway - hope that answers the question! :)

Regards,
Ryan

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Ryan
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Afterlife v1.7.2 released

Post by Ryan » July 5th, 2007, 6:41 pm

Hello all! :)

As the title of this thread has probably already told you, Afterlife version 1.7.2 is now out, with changes listed in the usual place. As always, please feel welcome to post below if you have any further comments. :)

Regards,
Ryan

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