0.4 New enemy discussion [SPOILERS]

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matt
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Re: 0.4 New enemy discussion [SPOILERS]

Post by matt »

The first thing I noticed with the enemy was the sound, I think if the scratching of the blade stopped when she timed out the player would notice it.
Okay, cool. That is the plan. That is basically how it works right now when you get far enough away from them, and that’s what I’ll do when you avoid them for long enough. I’ll probably decrease the distance to escape her as well.
The player is expecting to get slaughtered, but you'd already established how forgiving the death mechanic is that I doubt anyone would quit out and re-load the game, so really, the player thinks they are in immediate danger, when they are actually in zero danger, and isn't that the holy grail of horror game design?
Well, I want to use the first set up to teach the behavior of the new enemy, and I’m not sure how trapping the player will succeed in that regard. How do you imagine the first set up to play out with the player trapped? If it plays out differently, I'm not sure if that will meet my design goals.

I think for the next game, I'll probably try to make things even less mechanics focused and more "special case", but that's a lot of work, and we don't really have time for this game...
-Matt Gilgenbach
Lead Frightener at Infinitap Games

Harry Sunderland
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Re: 0.4 New enemy discussion [SPOILERS]

Post by Harry Sunderland »

Hey Matt, just played the new level (didn't have time for the entire build, and I want to save that for a video).

I have some feedback on the new enemy after reading this thread.

I know you want the feeling of "running" away from her, but maybe just make her disappear after a certain spot in the room. That way, in a situation such as nsane's, you could still retreat (even if at a slow pace) and de-spawn her.

I think that might still reinforce he ghastliness while still making her terrifying. Plus I feel like that'd make the situation where she's both to the right and left of you really scary (imagine thinking you're hot shit for toying with her like a mouse as she slowly drags behind you, only to find you moving right into her trap). Heck, maybe vary her speed up so sometimes you HAVE to run...but not always. (You toy with her slowly as you retreat from the right, and then she comes at you quite fast from the left, forcing you to run).

I might be going crazy, but maybe you could make her ONLY speed up if you de-spawned her while moving slowly (a punishment for dragging the poor girl slowly to her demise, she appears on the other side and comes at you fast).

On the whole, it took me a bit to figure her out. I LOVED what you did with her being both in front of and behind you. Honestly, if you could make things with her a bit more frantic (retreat...but then she's to the left of you, so run to the right, but she's there again, etc), I think it'd make her pretty fresh.

But these are one man's thoughts.

Loved the new level :)

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matt
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Re: 0.4 New enemy discussion [SPOILERS]

Post by matt »

I'm going to try despawning after a time limit which will basically functionally serve the same as despawning after you bring her back a certain distance. I may tweak it so if she is still close to you, she'll stay for longer just to prevent a very noticeable pop off, but I'm still playing around with it.

Varying her speed is a bit of a challenge because we'd probably want a new animation unless it's just like +/- 30%, but since she already walks very slowly, I don't think that'd be enough to force you to run. I'll see what I can do with the timeout and everything, and then you guys can let me know if you think it helps in the next build. :)
-Matt Gilgenbach
Lead Frightener at Infinitap Games

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gagaplex
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Re: 0.4 New enemy discussion [SPOILERS]

Post by gagaplex »

matt wrote:Varying her speed is a bit of a challenge because we'd probably want a new animation...
I'm not so sure. :D
Thinking of movies like "The Ring" here where the monster moves unnaturally fast at times. Perhaps you have a vision of her that's fixed in that regard, but I could imagine her looking right and proper creepy if she was sped up. Especially if you added in some of her other animation frames at times to make her "jerky", jerk her arm up or something. I could imagine that working really well, but one'd probably have to try that out. Plus, if it's not the "feel" you're going for it might simply be inappropriate even if it would work out.

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matt
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Re: 0.4 New enemy discussion [SPOILERS]

Post by matt »

I think the problem is that in games things can very easily look buggy and glitchy whereas in a movie, they just look creepy.

I'm pretty satisfied with all the changes I've made:
  • Timeout after 15 seconds (unless you are standing super close)
  • Decreased the disappear radius a bit, so you don't have to run as far
  • Enemy doesn't respawn if you leave the room
  • The enemies just go away completely based on certain death counts
That being said, I think it isn't going to be as action-y/challenge-y as you (as I imagine others) are looking for. That's okay with me. I think everyone has different expectations for what the game will be like. Some people liked the mechanic based challenges - others didn't. I am hoping to provide a variety of experience first and foremost.

Anyway, we'll try it out like this, and see how it goes. We still have some time to tune and tweak the enemies, although it's going to be a really busy 3.5 months for me.... :-/
-Matt Gilgenbach
Lead Frightener at Infinitap Games

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JPrice
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Re: 0.4 New enemy discussion [SPOILERS]

Post by JPrice »

matt wrote: I'm pretty satisfied with all the changes I've made:
  • Timeout after 15 seconds (unless you are standing super close)
  • Decreased the disappear radius a bit, so you don't have to run as far
  • Enemy doesn't respawn if you leave the room
  • The enemies just go away completely based on certain death counts
I think these changes are nice and will probably help make the enemy encounters a little more forgiving while still maintaining the original fear. So I think you should be fine Matt :)
"Always look on the bright side of life"
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ranger_lennier
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Re: 0.4 New enemy discussion [SPOILERS]

Post by ranger_lennier »

Well, I just played the new build (just moved to a new apartment--remind me to never move again), so I'm not sure I can add a whole lot to what the others have said, but I also had trouble with the enemy, and these are some things I tried:

1. Run around her. She was moving slowly enough that it looked like it would work, but once I passed her she practically teleported to slaughter me (though granted, I suppose some ghosts can do that).
2. Back away slowly. The other enemies in the game tend to patrol back and forth, so it seemed reasonable that if I kept her just on the edge of the screen, she'd eventually turn around.
3. Flee into the bedroom. Getting to the bedroom was easy. But then she just respawned when I went back out.
4. Explore the house some more. After spotting her, I went back into the previous sections of the house. Its layout had changed after I drank my milk, so why not after spotting a ghost?
5. Now I thought I was being really clever. Like some others did, I went back into the hallway without the candle. I saw her sparks along the ground, then walked to the top of the hall and just stood there. I figured she couldn't see me or hear me, so she'd just pass by. But no, she must have some special ghost senses, because it didn't help at all. (BTW, it looks like you can go throughout the house without the candle when respawning here, though I didn't go too far. I bet people could get really lost this way. Sounds like you're already removing that possibility, though.)

So, why didn't I try the real solution? I would guess it has a lot to do with it being so close to solution #3. Going to the end of the hallway gets rid of the ghost, but going a little further doesn't. Had I been playing with the changes you mentioned, I wouldn't have figured it out right away, but it wouldn't have taken me more than a few minutes.

Harry Sunderland
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Re: 0.4 New enemy discussion [SPOILERS]

Post by Harry Sunderland »

Of all of the changes, I think de-spawning Gabamid Head (a loving nickname I've come up with her because of her blade) when you leave the room will solve a large deal of the cases. I know I certainly tried leaving the room and coming back.

Honestly Matt, the first time I "solved" this encounter, I wasn't sure if what I did was correct or if the game glitched. That being said, reading the changes you listed, I'm certain that I (and many others) would have no difficulty understanding this encounter with these new layout.

Congrats on your new apartment Ranger!

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matt
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Re: 0.4 New enemy discussion [SPOILERS]

Post by matt »

I also added yet another way to get rid of her. If she goes off screen after 7.5 seconds, she disappears. If she follows you for 15 seconds and she isn't super close, she fades out. Of course, if you go back into the bedroom or whatever, she disappears regardless of timers.

I think with all these different ways to get her, people will realize that they have to flee to get rid of her. *fingers crossed*
-Matt Gilgenbach
Lead Frightener at Infinitap Games

Harry Sunderland
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Re: 0.4 New enemy discussion [SPOILERS]

Post by Harry Sunderland »

People will either get it, or have no idea how they got rid of her but just be glad she's gone.

She really is a creepy little thing.

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