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Author Topic: Mages Initiation demo feedback and a crash to desktop bug  (Read 4874 times)

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Lurker37

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Mages Initiation demo feedback and a crash to desktop bug
« on: March 15, 2013, 04:20:10 AM »

Played to demo from the kickstarter.

I liked the dials and the puzzles

I'm afraid I really didn't enjoy the combat. I found it too hard to make the spells hit, and once I ran out of mana there was nothing to do but stand and die. Fire bomb was almost useless, due to almost never hitting, and even the basic fire attack missed almost as often as I hit, and if they got too close it wouldn't let me cast spells any more, (possibly getting interrupted?)

Unfortunately, there wasn't enough room to evade the goblins, so you could not avoid being surrounded. Circle of fire offered only a few seconds' grace, and chewed through mana very quickly.

I died about a dozen times before passing the test by sheer luck due to actually killing some goblins before they fled and scoring a potion of each type that they dropped.

When the goblins ran off instead of dying, I felt cheated, and that I hadn't really 'won'. (I tried to kill them as they fled, but my spells mostly missed.)

I left this section of the tutorial dreading further combat and uncertain if I wanted to continue playing.

Also, a repeatable crash to desktop, usually occuring if you cast the circle of fire spell two or three times in quick succession during the third wave:

Error: The character 'Pygmy Goblin' could not be displayed because there were no frames in loop 0 of view 351.
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DrJones

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Re: Mages Initiation demo feedback and a crash to desktop bug
« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2013, 05:24:13 AM »

The projectiles are more acuratte if you raise intelligence as a stat. In the final game we will explain what each stat does.  The best stat assignments for the demo are 2/2/2/2 because then D'Arc is not horrible in any aspect.
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GameDevChris

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Re: Mages Initiation demo feedback and a crash to desktop bug
« Reply #2 on: March 15, 2013, 05:51:09 AM »

Thanks for the crash report. Will look into that.

Just a note about the Fire Bomb, you need to aim it precisely. It requires a bit of "lead time" so that the goblins will walk into it as it explodes. Also, you currently need to cast it so that explodes just beneath where their feet are. All of this is adjustable, however, and it might make sense to make the blast radius a bit more sensitive. :)
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gandalf.nho

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Re: Mages Initiation demo feedback and a crash to desktop bug
« Reply #3 on: March 15, 2013, 09:48:02 AM »

I also found the combate too much difficult, I hope to have a option to lower the difficulty, turn more casual
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Iurii

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Re: Mages Initiation demo feedback and a crash to desktop bug
« Reply #4 on: March 15, 2013, 09:52:12 AM »

I agree with the topic starter! Puzzles and the story before the combat were great, but I found the combat to be somewhat confusing. I press spells button, and I have no idea why I miss.
And I have also got CTD after trying to use spell #3 with the second goblin:
"An error has occurred. Plase contact the game author for support, as this is likely to be a scripting error and not a bug in AGS (ACI version 3.21.11155)
Error: The character 'Redcap Goblin' could not be displayed because there were no frames in loop 0 of view 259."
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michi

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Re: Mages Initiation demo feedback and a crash to desktop bug
« Reply #5 on: March 15, 2013, 11:19:10 AM »

Hey Guys,
just tried the alpha demo.

first impression: love it! i love the "high rez vga" graphics. old school, atmosphere, etc. i love that there are a lot of hotspots with comments made by the character, just like in old sierra games.

ok now some of the negatives i've found:
- not alt-tab friendly yet. i alt tabbed out, then had to open task manager to force shut down the program. when i went back in game, the top menu bar wouldnt pop up anymore when i move the mouse to the top of the screen, so i hat do alt-ctr-del out again.
-gameplay issue: i would like to have a slider for walking speed (like in the old games). i know theres a double click run or perma run option, but i dont want to have my character run through the world. just "walk really fast", the walking animation is too slow for my taste.

overall impression: awesome!

edit: wait, what? i have to type those 4 security questions just for posting a message?
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DrJones

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Re: Mages Initiation demo feedback and a crash to desktop bug
« Reply #6 on: March 15, 2013, 11:42:50 AM »

The issue with Alt+tab is engine related, already reported but out of our control. However, if you keep the keys pressed for a longer time, you'll be able to Alt+tab without glitching.

We take note about the walking animation speed suggestion.
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radon

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Re: Mages Initiation demo feedback and a crash to desktop bug
« Reply #7 on: March 15, 2013, 02:13:38 PM »

I confirm the crash to desktop on the third wave bug.
Another bug I encountered: I can take an infinite number of green gems from the pot. (I saved after I took the first one, after some time I loaded the game and found out I can take as many as I want.) Very generous of you. :-)
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FlameStrike

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Re: Mages Initiation demo feedback and a crash to desktop bug
« Reply #8 on: March 16, 2013, 09:14:14 AM »

I agree with Lurker37. It was great up until combat, then it became nearly impossible on, by my count, the fourth wave. I also had problems with my spells missing more often than they hit, and the combat system is counter-intuitive. Right clicking to attack is not normal, and more often than not I end up left clicking and moving instead of attacking. The retreating goblins were impossible to hit, as all my spells missed every time. I think I killed a goblin once, in half a dozen restarts of the combat.

Next, and this may be an AGS issue that you have no control over, but I have problems with the resolution of the game. I have to run it in a window at the lower resolution, making some things in the game difficult to see, and resulting in my pointer frequently leaving the screen during combat, making it even harder. If the final product could include more resolution options, including a widescreen option, it would be appreciated.

Finally, I do have a crash to report. It is the same as the others: loop 0 of view 243.

All in all, it looks good, and I appreciate the chance to give feedback on these issues.
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antipus

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Re: Mages Initiation demo feedback and a crash to desktop bug
« Reply #9 on: March 16, 2013, 09:49:16 AM »

Thanks, all, for the fantastic feedback! We're working out the "loop 0" bug right now. Thanks for the reports, as well!

I suppose that something that we could have done much better was use combat more as a tutorial, explaining your different options and spells as the waves progress. The general idea was that the elevated archer can only be injured with the fireball spell, the next goblin (or wave of two) can be easily dispatched with a few well-placed (and well-timed) mines, and the final massive wave is a good chance to use the ring of fire together with the other two spells.

We will definitely work on the balancing the combat difficulty in the months ahead, and will most likely be including difficulty settings as well as allowing users to choose which keys do what based on their own personal preferences. What other suggestions would you give for ironing out the combat?
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DrJones

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Re: Mages Initiation demo feedback and a crash to desktop bug
« Reply #10 on: March 16, 2013, 10:26:41 AM »

It looks like those issues can be avoided if we had provided more information to you. In the settings panel, for example, you have the option to switch the left and right buttons during battle. D'Arc will also miss less if you raise the Intelligence stat. The final game will explain to you what each stat does before you raise it.

We have no control over the resolution issue, but we have reported it to the engine developers and might try to hire a programmer to help them fix it if we get enough funding. In the meanwhile, you can test different configurations on winsetup.exe, for example, some people have troubles with running the demo unless they set a "No filter" option. I don't think we'll be able to offer a true wide-screen option for this game as the backgrounds have a fixed size that we can't change, unless you ask for an option to center the background on the screen without stretching, which might be doable (but again, out of our control).

The crash has been reported and we are working on it. The demo has some bugs that we had to leave unresolved due to time constraints, but they'll be fixed on the final game.
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GameDevChris

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Re: Mages Initiation demo feedback and a crash to desktop bug
« Reply #11 on: March 17, 2013, 05:02:43 AM »

Just to clarify a few things:

-The splash screen at the beginning of the demo does mention that you can use the WASD and arrow keys for movement, as well as toggle left and right clicking.

-Raising your stats in the demo doesn't actually have any affect on your spells. However, in the final game, your spells will aim more accurately if you have a higher Intelligence stat, as DrJones mentioned.

-In the demo, the 4th wave goblin pack pretty much swarm you all at the same time. But there are actual formations the enemies can use (which are already programmed) where some of them will evade you or wait on the sidelines while only one or two attack. Perhaps a difficulty slider could simply alter the number of simultaneous attackers? That is, if the "difficulty" slider bar is on the easiest setting, there will only ever be one main attacker. But if it's on the hardest setting then it will be an all-out, white-knuckled brouhaha where it's every opponent for himself. That means that the kind of combat seen in the demo would represent the absolute hardest setting in the game.

-We're gathering all crash reports and working on them. If you run across any more, keep them coming!
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