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Mr Robot 2 to-do list =D
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lifemare



Joined: 02 Jul 2008
Posts: 7



PostPosted: Thu Jul 03, 2008 8:27 pm    Post subject: Mr Robot 2 to-do list =D Reply with quote

Dear botfans


I can't get over having finished the game. It's been a long time since i've had so much fun playing and loving every step of it. In fact the last i do remember goes way back to when Mucky Foot was on the scene with its underdog masterpiece Startopia.

So, given that i'm having a bad time letting go, i thought i might ease the pain by keeping this little thread going. If the moonpod team finds it useful i'd love to contribute a few ideas for an hopefully upcoming sequel and urge others to add to this little list of what would be cool to improve or even introduce to the game. I'm not interested in pointing out whatever flaws there might be but rather offer some solutions or new perspectives. Would hate this to sound like complainting. Far from it!

Some of this stuff you might have read on other scattered posts around the forum. But i wouldn't leave it out just because it's a popular request. Please forgive the redundancy.

Here goes:

- Drop the isometric view.
I'll buy a solid 2D with artistic value more often than an over bloated unimaginative 3D, but the puzzle-solving could really use some more control over how you view the room. That PDA option just is a little user-unfriendly. Adding shadows to objects to better acess their position as was already mentioned on another thread could be a rapid approach but i don't think it would suffice. Panning and rotating should be a priority for a long-term solution.

- Please oil the interface.
It's not only hard to settle for mouse or keyboard because of interaction limits and poor key-mapping, the menus also behave too slowly. Keeping the arrow key pressed should cycle faster (it takes almost a second between combat orders). I love the way you can play the game with just two action keys, you deserve a lot of compliments on that achievement, but the numpad would be a better option for direction keys. Losing the isometry would probably demand point-and-click, that would take some work. When it comes to menus: consider the mouse scrool, key shortcuts for battle orders, list cycling from last to first, arranging options for item lists or a regular boxing inventory (item icons would be great too), aslong as you don't settle for an RPG cliché, that i know you're too creative to. Wink

- Map issues:
The PDA is a cool alternative to cluttering the screen with a bunch of panels and a mini-map is not that important in this game. But the one you do have seriously need rethinking. First off it would be a lot more attractive if it were somewhat similar to the hacking view, i don't mean 3D, there's no need for it to be that complex (although it's an option), just a regular grid with better visual metaphors for corridors and rooms. And it could really use some screenshot preview of the visited rooms on mouse-over or click, aswell as it's designation - and of course you don't have to stop there. Secondly, as it's already been pointed out, it has to be scroolable and it would be nice if it signaled the waypoints and eve terminals or other important features. A lot of work here also. Sorry Razz

- Game modes:
It would be awesome if you could play sandbox maps where the puzzle solving wasn't so imperative, but rather character development and hacking (less of an adventure, more of an RPG). Don't get me wrong i love the game as is, but it could use some replay value. Once you solved a puzzle there's not much challenge in doing it again. As much as i love it, starting over just to try and do it better than the first time is not much of an incentive for me... specially when you can allways go back on your first game.

- Hacking:
It's definitely the most awesome feature of the game. But nevertheless i'm sorry to say it's so bellow it's full potential. On the bright side it's a damn gold mine. Investing on this alone would bring the game to whole a new level. There's a lot of RPG formulas wich weren't used and i understand it's tough to resort to those over-exploited archetypes while aiming for a fresh and inovative game as Mr Robot no doubt is. Still there's much you can use without risking depleting that aura. A bigger and better plethora of enemies for one thing has to be in your minds right now, the ones you have feel like nothing more than a sample of the real deal. Considering the tron-like cyberspace is the (brilliant) equivalent to the old RPG dungeon you can start to see how very short it lands on the exploration and maze complexity of it's play-a-likes. Level-ups, character development, proficiency, skill and program specialization, equipment, items, all that could also benefit from some careful borrowing out of the genre universe.

On a similar matter, it's been said more than once that the battling seriously needs to be made more challenging. I couldn't agree more. Although i wouldn't recomend messing with the experience engine, as it is already very hard to level up (you'll never end a game at level 10 unless you hack every bot and re-hack every teminal multiple times), but rather investing on enemy power. Hopefully when working on all that can be done to take this game even further, that will become an inevitable consequence.

Some minor issues wich can be more or less promptly adressed about hacking:
1- making the "boss stage" more obvious so you may explore the network at will without risking an abrupt and unexpected end after winning what you thought was only another regular battle.
2- adding a few boss stages wich aren't about enemy numbers but special powers and endurance of a single target. HEL for instance is still a very anti-climatic opponent.
3- highlighting the selected ghost when issuing orders instead of making them step forward would cut-back on battle time and make it all less tedious. Apart from the menu handling already mentioned.
4- giving the characters off-battle skills like the "shout" and "intimidate" Poo Bear mentioned and others besides those would be very helpful. One brainstorming between you guys and i'm sure you'll come up with a dozen great inovations on this untapped area.
5- hacking things besides robots and terminals and not allways beeing about blowing them up would expand the whole complexity of the game (ie: hacking quests).


Well, enough writting for one week. Smile
I'm sure i left out a lot of stuff, but you can all take over for me now.
Hope this isn't too boring to read and you moonpoders might find a couple of things worthy.
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icarus
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 03, 2008 8:42 pm    Post subject: Re: Mr Robot 2 to-do list =D Reply with quote

lifemare wrote:

- Drop the isometric view.
I'll buy a solid 2D with artistic value more often than an over bloated unimaginative 3D



I'm sorry, I would love to reply to your post objectively rather than give in to an emotional response based off of the firs comment but.

RAAAAAAAAAAAGE!
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lifemare



Joined: 02 Jul 2008
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 03, 2008 8:56 pm    Post subject: Re: Mr Robot 2 to-do list =D Reply with quote

icarus wrote:
RAAAAAAAAAAAGE!


lol! I've noticed your replies around this forum before. (Raptor fan here too btw) your allways pulling the rug under people's feet Laughing

i'm just not sure where your aiming... i wasn't insinuating mr robot is a over-bloated 3D but the other way around. Since it's isometric considering it 3D is a bit clumsy, you could easily achieve the same effect with 2D sprites. So what i'm saying is keep it simple like it is, don't go Quake on us, but allow some control over how you view the rooms.

Still enraged?
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Weeble
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 03, 2008 10:10 pm    Post subject: Re: Mr Robot 2 to-do list =D Reply with quote

Quote:
- Please oil the interface.
+1
Quote:
- Hacking:
+1
Quote:
2- adding a few boss stages wich aren't about enemy numbers but special powers and endurance of a single target. HEL for instance is still a very anti-climatic opponent.
+1

The best RPG end-of-game boss I can recall in a game I've played is Lavos from Chronotrigger. (Kefka from FF6 was good, but a bit confusing. I can't remember the boss-fights from FF8 or Wild Arms. I think most of the other RPGs I can remember completing are obscure Genesis/Megadrive ones.) The elements that make it good are:
  • Multiple stages.
  • Reprisal of earlier bosses' attack styles.
  • A primary enemy with huge quantities of HP, and secondary enemies that are weaker, but can be resurrected.
  • Deception: the primary enemy is actually not the one you think it is.

Other tricks that I've seen used to make boss fights interesting: reactions to certain kinds of player actions (e.g. does a special counter-attack/goes into defensive mode/summons allies when hit with fire/an ally dies/etc); wind-up moves - the boss visibly builds up for the big attack, and you either have to do something to stop him from doing it, or do something to try to survive it when it comes; distinct phase-changes, which change the boss's behaviour and the effective strategies against it.
Quote:
5- hacking things besides robots and terminals and not allways beeing about blowing them up would expand the whole complexity of the game (ie: hacking quests).
+1
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icarus
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 03, 2008 10:51 pm    Post subject: Re: Mr Robot 2 to-do list =D Reply with quote

lifemare wrote:
icarus wrote:
RAAAAAAAAAAAGE!


lol! I've noticed your replies around this forum before. (Raptor fan here too btw) your allways pulling the rug under people's feet Laughing

i'm just not sure where your aiming... i wasn't insinuating mr robot is a over-bloated 3D but the other way around. Since it's isometric considering it 3D is a bit clumsy, you could easily achieve the same effect with 2D sprites. So what i'm saying is keep it simple like it is, don't go Quake on us, but allow some control over how you view the rooms.

Still enraged?


Well as it stands I think the block 3d look is a nice aesthetic. This is also misguided rage at the people who prefer 2d to 3d.
I don't mind sprites, Some of my favorite games are 2d.
However I HATE and I mean HATE people who prefer 2d over 3d claiming that simple is better and that games used to be better.

Understand that this comes after news that the new Mega Man 9 game for the wii will have 8bit graphics to appease the mindless fanboys.


My preference for 3d is more of a gameplay thing. I don't care for graphics as long as it has a style that works well with itself.
But I have always preferred 3d gameplay. As I kid I never played doom, I played Descent.

That doesn't mean I can't appreciate 2d games, I love SHUMPS like touhou, starscape, and Raptor.


Back on subject. I can't speak for the moonpod team but I like the graphics of Mr Robot the way they are.
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lifemare



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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 2:55 am    Post subject: Re: Mr Robot 2 to-do list =D Reply with quote

icarus wrote:
I HATE and I mean HATE people who prefer 2d over 3d claiming that simple is better and that games used to be better.

Oh cr#p! I gotta an enraged troll after me now! lol Razz
but that's exactly my view on the subject! so many franchises have ruined the gaming experience for me so many times with the 3D idolatry i've feared i might never find a game attractive again. Desperados, Commandos, Worms, just off the top of my head - it's like a virus i tell you!
Why bother to emulate reality with 3D when games are all about fantasy? I say the challenge is in making something truly different, not trying to render trees and boulders and water physics as perfectly as you humanly can just for the sake of illusion. The possibility of illusion is in the beholder. And we'll settle for a lot less, aslong as we're willing (and entertained).

icarus wrote:
I can't speak for the moonpod team but I like the graphics of Mr Robot the way they are.

Second that. Quantum leap from the flash-manga style of starscape. Miles away from any other independent game graphics actually! it rocks!
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icarus
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 3:42 am    Post subject: Re: Mr Robot 2 to-do list =D Reply with quote

lifemare wrote:

Why bother to emulate reality with 3D when games are all about fantasy?


Shouldn't fantasy be better than reality?
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 8:02 am    Post subject: Re: Mr Robot 2 to-do list =D Reply with quote

icarus wrote:
lifemare wrote:

Why bother to emulate reality with 3D when games are all about fantasy?


Shouldn't fantasy be better than reality?


You are so right! And 3D is better than 2D... So the best games will have even more dimensions! Now I will go make a fortune with a 5D Tetris clone... :P
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Poo Bear
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 8:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Some good suggestions there lifemare. Smile
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icarus
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 4:02 pm    Post subject: Re: Mr Robot 2 to-do list =D Reply with quote

Weeble wrote:
icarus wrote:
lifemare wrote:

Why bother to emulate reality with 3D when games are all about fantasy?


Shouldn't fantasy be better than reality?


You are so right! And 3D is better than 2D... So the best games will have even more dimensions! Now I will go make a fortune with a 5D Tetris clone... Razz


I'ts more complicated than that. Humans have a hard time keeping track of more dimensions that we are used to. Even 4d is hard if we have to keep track of non linear time.

What I mean is I want to be able to do anything I could do in real life. This includes the ability to go above things.

Complexity is good but A simulation can not and should not be more complicated than real life. If you are going to simulate things in dimensional space you are wasting resources that could be used to improve AI or physics on a 3d plane.

But this discussion belongs here
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lifemare



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 10, 2008 8:17 am    Post subject: Re: Mr Robot 2 to-do list =D Reply with quote

icarus wrote:
But this discussion belongs here

My thoughts too. we kind of drifted away from the purpose... But i'm surprised to see there's not many people joining in the discussion. Sad

Poo Bear wrote:
Some good suggestions there lifemare. Smile

Thanks! Hope it's useful! So what do you say? Are you guys working on any new projects? What's cooking? Any talk about robots? Very Happy
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Poo Bear
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 10, 2008 9:05 am    Post subject: Re: Mr Robot 2 to-do list =D Reply with quote

lifemare wrote:
So what do you say? Are you guys working on any new projects? What's cooking? Any talk about robots? Very Happy


No talk of robots at the moment I'm afraid:
http://www.moonpod.com/board/viewtopic.php?p=24952#24952
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icarus
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 11, 2008 3:16 am    Post subject: Re: Mr Robot 2 to-do list =D Reply with quote

lifemare wrote:
icarus wrote:
But this discussion belongs here

My thoughts too. we kind of drifted away from the purpose... But i'm surprised to see there's not many people joining in the discussion. Sad


Because quite frankly nobody ever talks about anything here. Its like they want this board to die.

I have to pull out all the stops and "yank the rug out from under them" to even get one reply. And than after that. Nothing.
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wizard924



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PostPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2008 8:06 am    Post subject: Re: Mr Robot 2 to-do list =D Reply with quote

lifemare wrote:

- Drop the isometric view.
I'll buy a solid 2D with artistic value more often than an over bloated unimaginative 3D, but the puzzle-solving could really use some more control over how you view the room. That PDA option just is a little user-unfriendly. Adding shadows to objects to better acess their position as was already mentioned on another thread could be a rapid approach but i don't think it would suffice. Panning and rotating should be a priority for a long-term solution.

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Fost
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 14, 2008 12:05 pm    Post subject: Re: Mr Robot 2 to-do list =D Reply with quote

lifemare wrote:

- Drop the isometric view.


Do you mean have some viewpoint like Mario? Or a separate set of keys for spinning the room about. Currently we don't even build the backs of the rooms so...
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