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First Access Feedback Sticky

A topic by HOF Studios created 152 days ago Views: 473 Replies: 21
Viewing posts 1 to 8
Developer

We are now selling limited copies of the Depth of Extinction First Access only on itch.io and would love to hear your feedback or questions.

Hello,

Just to let you know there seems to be something wrong with the package of the Mac version: when extracting it, what should be the content of the .app is unpacked in a standard folder. I tried running the application in the terminal, which works to a point, where it stops working (I suspect it might be looking for ressources and not find them if launched that way).

Cheers!

Developer

Which version of OSX are you using? I'm going to try to push out another build on Monday. so will see if I can resolve it for you then.

I am using OS X 10.11.6.

Developer

One other thing you can try is running it using the itch.io client that can be downloaded here: 

https://itch.io/app

(Edited 1 time)

Reporting that launching it through the ich.io client indeed worked!

Edit: I'll add some comments. First, it was a pleasant surprise to find a little tutorial: didn't expect that for a first release!

I have only 3 little comments so far :

- it may be my screen, but the stars of the skills in the stat tree are barely visible.
- I am playing on a laptop, and the framerate isn't locked, which leads to noisy and perceptible overheating, especially on the intermission screen. I know this isn't probably high priority right now, but just throwing that in.

I need to get more comfortable with the interface, but besides knowing what ammo or health was left on my guys, it was all very intuitive, and the iconography at the bottom is great. Also hurray for the reverse camera pan option: that was disorienting for me at first ;D Really looking forward to your game!

(Edited 2 times)

So, first of all, it was nice seeing you guys at Momocon and playing a mission! I hope that you've seen some sales from the venture. I was the blue haired catgirl as you may have guessed by my avatar. 


Moving on, Feedback feedback, Come and get your feedback!
I think I see what this game is aiming to be, and I dig it! My advice and suggestions will be along the lines of trying to make that as successful and nifty as possible. I'm sure some of the things I'm going to suggest are already planned for the future, but nonetheless, let's take it from the top.

Large scale suggestions:

Character creation: This one is a big one for games like this, and this game is no exception. One of my favorite things about games like this is sending a unit of my own characters/Friends/The closest approximation of characters from games/movies in to fight. Naming characters, being able to tweak their appearances and growth, all important. There at this time unless I'm overlooking something doesn't seem to be differences between the dude, the lady and the robot, which is fine in my opinion. But being able to customize their appearance would be pretty nifty. If in no other way than being able to access a color slider on their clothes and hair would be a start. Also, Tip for something that would set you apart a little, once you have a character creation system, try not putting too much on the way of Gender stuff on it. Let people pick a lady voice for the big buff solider guy if they want and vice versa. If you offer a few clothing options, offer similar types to all the soldiers. the graphics are light duty enough that the "Woman" sprite could just as easily be a slim man, and it'd be keen to be able to define the characters with less "Lebels" as to what they are. 

Character building (Story): Right now the characters are a little bland, which is fine at this early stage, but I'd really love to see one of these games where characters could get their own little miniarcs, opportunities for them to show a bit of character in game. Like perhaps as part of the character creation idea, have quirks, little things the characters like that they might be able to find on missions that'll give them a small XP boost at the end of the mission if they bring back. For example, if a character as the quirk "Smoker"  they get an XP bonus if they bring home some cigarettes after a mission, which could play into expanded things like if they DON'T get their cigarettes for too many missions they get the shakes and take a small aim penalty. Furthermore, groups that go out together building relationships is a great touch, from a story standpoint have the characters form friendships, rivalries, love interests, ect. Have them have small stat boosts when they are on mission together. Have them temporarily get a major revenge stat boost if a friend falls in battle. These things help identify these little people we're moving around on the screen as more than just a set of numbers and actually cause us to have an attachment to them, and helps flesh out why we care about seeing their plight through.

Character building (Stats):  I like the skills so far, though I do wish the Mission participation bonus was a little higher, I appreciate when even my units on the bench can get some small XP while out of the action, having things for them to do around base would be another opportunity for them to have character interaction, as well as keep them from getting too far behind. Some non-combat skills would be pretty cool to see as well, even if it's just one tree. 

Plot: I know that it's an alpha and that right now you're working on the system itself, that said, a little more context for the story than "We were on the surface, now we're not." Would perhaps act a bit of a stronger hook. Perhaps each update put out a new story mission, and between time let people cut their teeth on randomly generated ones for loot and the like. A more diverse cast of NPCs would also be welcome as at the moment there's not many and again, for someone who comes to games for plot more than gameplay, it doesn't draw one in as strongly as actually having people with their own hopes, dreams, and desires. I'm sure this one is in the works though.

Player character: Who are we? There's nothing wrong with being a blank slate character, but at the same time based on the way there are characters that are talking to you it's always been a little strange to me to not have some level of personalization in my avatar. File this under "Plotty things that I'd love to see and have ideas about, but might be outside of the project's scope"

(All these character bits, I'm sure you can tell I'm more towards being a writer)

Mod support: I talked to you about this at the booth a bit, and while this game is in alpha, it's perhaps a little early to think TOO hard on this, but at the same time, if the game is built from the ground up with the idea that modding is a planned feature, you can keep it in mind for your designs and make sure there's room for it, and tools for players to use in the future, perhaps provide a guide to modifying game files to tweak things. Things like map makers, item makers, scenario makers. Making these things easy to work with will help the community that comes to enjoy your game help your game thrive by putting out it's own content. If you'd like some examples, look at the wide variety of XCOM mods, or, for something in the more indie Scene, take note of Xenonaughts (Also inspired by Xcom) both have rather extensive modding communities, to the point where XCOM2 was designed from the beginning with the modding community in mind. 

Weapon Variety and traits: A little thing I enjoy in games like this are small distinguishing things on weapons, be it little marks that make it a bit different, small statistical changes that make this shotgun just a hair different than the other shotguns of the same type, or familiarity bonuses for characters that stick with a particular weapon for a few missions, these things help bring character to weapons beyond just black and white stats. This may or may not matter to you, but I find it a little more fun personally.


Smaller things:

This one I'm not going to elaborate so much on, just bullet point some things I'd love to see.

Melee (Weapons and skills)  

Side arms 

More grenade options

Weapons designed to fuck up cover

Small tweak to the Line of sight settings so that a solider will peek around a wall they are huddled next to?


I encountered a situation that seemed a little silly to me. It looked a bit like this...

...M

E[_]

I'm next to the guy basically, the top of the box while he's on the side, and he still had cover against me, that seems a little silly to me.


The tutorial seemed to sort of short out on me, I went in with the Tactician lady and it seemed to behave itself up until after she used her "Murder everyone" skill, after that it sort of just kept giving her turns and the enemies didn't react or get turns. Not sure what was supposed to happen there.


This is where I'll leave this one. If I have more ideas later, I'll post them. 


Incidentally, if you need a writer, I'm a writer :)

Developer

Thanks for the feedback! It was nice to talk to you and we like your suggestions/ideas. The character stuff will definitely get some significant work at some point and I like the ideas you mentioned and we have some other things in mind you might like. Having some unlockable options for appearance are one thing we are considering.

Appearance stuff is always welcomed. I've played a little further than I had when I first posted now. I certainly notice that the characters have portraits but they are really only used for a moment when you meet them. It would be nice to have a little "Face window" when their turn comes up or something, just so you know who you're looking at. Also, for story based things that perhaps could come sooner than later, I'm thinking a short story interlude between zones. Like, you get done with the scrappers and they tell you that the Rust buckets may have the data you need to set a course for the next area or something you need, and thus you have the reason you're moving on.


Further, there seems to be some sort of flooded world thing going on (at least I think? We always seem to be getting on our missions from a sub) which I think is pretty neat and would love to hear it expanded upon, how did this happen and why sort of stuff. The world is just as much a character as any  other. For that matter, if it is a water filled world, a mission between zones where enemy pirates attack and you have to fight them off would be pretty interesting.


When it comes to the idea of character creation, one thing to really consider is if you want it to be more like XCOM, Xenonaughts, or others like it, where you get characters and create them from the ground up, or if you want it to be more like Hard West, or Fire emblem, something where the characters you get are set and you only really choose how they grow. the former allows the player to make their soldiers into whoever they want them to be. In my copy of xcom 2 I'm running characters from Left 4 Dead, Payday 2, and other random people just because the idea of them fighting aliens makes me giggle.

The advantage of having a set cast however is that you can have them have a much more cohesive narrative around them, you get to decide how they interact with the other units and have more control over their story and can, in theory, use that  to make the story sound more solid.


My personal advice is to pick one direction or the other and go in on it hard, because if you try to do both at once, you're much more likely to capture the worst parts of both of these elements rather than the best.

Certainly looking forward to seeing where this goes.

(Edited 1 time)

I like the gameplay and especially the fact that the game can be run on low end machines. It's a very early version, so I guess you are already on some of these things, but here's my first impressions after not so much time with the game (will play more tomorrow):

Style
- love it!

Cover system - sometimes there are two covers close together and it's hard to differenciate if the protection icon shows my protection from being shot from the left or right or if it's some kind of general protection on that position including both sides.

Customization
- I'm pretty sure you are onto this already, but we really need to have that. If there's one thing I loved on XCOM, then it's my team! MY team. I changed their names, appearances, everything to who I wanted them to be. I formed them to the soldiers I wanted them to be. That is an important part for these games and you need that!

Story
- as it's an early version I'm assuming there will be more to come, but most importantly: I need to know what we are fighting. There has to be some motivation, that keeps me on my toes.

Will add more feedback after I played more...

Developer

Thanks for the feedback! Looking forward to hearing more :)

there are no character creation nor customizable progression.

if this state was the way to the future, i won't play anymore and never recommend to my friends.

after long waiting, this early/alpha version was big disappointment.

i can't say  but "no, this isn't the thing what JA2 or first X-Com players are looking for."

most lacking of this type of games is forced liner progression like new X-Com. its totally off the mark for being called tactical squad based rpg/strategy.

Developer (Edited 1 time)

How long did you play? The character progression is much more customizable than the demo. You can assign up to 2 classes (5 now but more coming) to a character (1 at start and another at level 5) and skills are tied to stat levels. 

Character customization is on the To Do list.

We still have quite a bit we plan to add to the game and will do a post next week with some more details so hang in there with us!

ok, i found build 29.3. so i keep playing more and see the changes.

so far, one thing i feel very annoying is unstable screen view when my turn starts. it's unsteady scrolling irritate me and the screen goes off every time. the fixed setting of right mouse button to drag screen is candidate of this.

i tried "manual pan camera" in option, but its the same. this part should be changed. it already hurts game experience badly.

and as to mini-map. when clicked, stretched one pops up but its virtually useless since i can see exact what i want to know in mini-map. it would better have camera view's jump function when clicking in any part of mini-map.

Developer

Thanks for the feedback and for giving it another try! I plan to play JA2 some this coming week and get an idea about what they do well. I'm sad to say that I've never played it but bought a copy on GOG a while back and have been meaning to give it a run through.

The camera is a definite point we are going to work on for the next build. Maybe you can use the WASD or Arrow keys to make it more comfortable for you in the meantime? We definitely also plan to upgrade the minimap in a future build.

more rework for camera will be awesome.

if you play Jagged Allience 2, i strongly recommend using 1.13 fan patch from Bear's Pit. it changes the game mechanics to maximize in every respect and reveal the potential of the game. usually JA2 fan speaks about it with patch. as vanilla state is rather pity. since it was one of the last Legacy of old Sir-tech company, it couldn't hold time till completion and released as if literally unfinished buisiness.

JA2 Bear's Pit mod patch (Stable)

http://ja2v113.pbworks.com/w/p...

Unstable but Latest

http://kermi.pp.fi/JA_2/v1.13_...


the input is rather complex if you compared with similar games in same genre, even with original X-com with OpenXcom applied. but once you got used to, you would notice how JA2 had born from incredibly rich springs of ideas as a tactical squad based strategy role playing. and the pacing of the game is really second to none imnho.

some russian JA2 follower games like 7.62 tried to become golden but all of them are just like a similar playing ground with raw materials scattered around.

Wasteland 2 tried to contain JA2's combat and gun systems, but it also failed for cutting too many edges. but the pacing was nearest to JA2.

Shadowrun Chronicles should be mentioned as remarkable hidden gem of tactical turn-based squad based role playing game the pacing wise. the point is, smooth playability in both of single/multi play. its rarest case in this genre. within the current new Shadowrun series, i have to say Chronicles is still staying in rather rough made state, but the pacing and mission based progression should be technically in the same scope of Depth of Extinction. the opinion from TRPG players of Shadowrun (veterans) are mostly divided by 2. "it's too simplistic" or "still somehow feels like more "Shadowrun" than other new ones". the persons of latter opinion got the real core of the game i think.

Developer

Thanks for the recommendation. My only PC laptop is Windows 10 and I couldn't get the Bear's Pit mod version to run there. Kept crashing and none of the troubleshooting steps worked. I was able to get the GOG version to run but it locked up as soon as I got into combat. I may try to watch some youtube videos.

sorry for late reply. but its very pity for hearing your failure of launching JA2 with Bear's Pit mod.

seems some Win10 user could run and others couldn't.

since i've heard tons of complain about Win10 from friends, i judged its not ready as main OS yet and can't switch from Win7, so i can't check the condition myself.

i hope future release of Bear's Pit would make compatibility issues resolved.

Developer

i would definitely recommendstaying on 7. I bought a new laptop to use for demos and had no choice. 

Also you should try out build 30. I added a recruit screen similar to what I saw in JA2. I think we will continue to build on this idea over the next few months but curious if you have thoughts. 

finally, initial character creation has returned !!

yes, that's almost changing everything for player. ready made pc is good for showing example or suggestion, but its as such. full scratch character is the real avator/ego of the player and fascinate role playing ongoing.

(Edited 1 time)

Well, if you want to talk about other games, you should then try 7,62 High Calibre. It's a 10 years old gem, still very playable thanks to an awesowe mod that is actually to be release this summer : Hard Life Mod. It's basically the russian mirror of Jagged Alliance.

Here is an good recent Let's Play :


It runs very well on Linux with WINE via Steam, if you ask.

i have already mentioned about 7.62 and other russian made JA2 followers.
russian mirror isn't correct description. its just one of the series of russian's attempt to mimic JA2.
7.62 was best shot for them and good one for sure, but that's it.
all of them are in 3D environment and has its own charm from it, but the pacing and combat wise, like other 3-dimensionized sequel/ripp-off games would have fallen into problematic state inevitably, in the shade of original's long stretched shadow and never matched.

clunky 3D display system cause just hardship to grasp whats going on at first glance, it makes player feel everything more bland, distant and less vivid or even narrower than 2D once he noticed its kinda series of collection of inorganic objects.
as a result, it becomes just pointlessly bulky, slow and lackluster for the rest of the play.
player who tried to do same general things with JA2, should see less polished state all in all, or too much airs to put on.

i had played 7.62 vanilla state and with Blue Sun mod several times when the game was still hot, but after-impression was too little to remember. its just so-so or rather unpleasant cumbersome experience after all and could have never kept interest as JA2. so that almost no memory left now but soon remembered the cause written in above.
and if my memory was correct, Hardlife Mod adds so called "realistic" thingy to make the game more harder. its more stray than colorful.

so, since Depth of Extinction is top-down view 2D tactical game with retro perspective approach, i thought its best to remark JA2 as ancestor and really good example of this kind which still holds up and shine.
similar scale, similar sized squad management, and so on. expression of terrains, and the focus should be within the same scope of JA2 as i said before.
its a world of gaming where is irrelevant to hick second handed unnatural 3D poser.

and one more important things. after success of new X-com, good pacing of turn based game could have convinced new, younger audience. it also succeeded in threading the line of the genre to the future.

technically, there was no reason for new X-Com had to be 3D. see how new X-Com has been ridiculously simplified to make it's game experience much poorer if compared to original. its badly suffer from short living linear progression so that keeps me away from it after several through since there is no replay value. but at the same time, it's simplified shape suggests ideal ways such as:

1. detailed info is shown on demand and only if necessary. since every player knows keeping already-knowing-things on screen is not only useless but just annoying.
2. devs know well how the player will become concentrate on only important things to keep playing. thus, less informative at once and simple interaction to work on.
3. trying to be simple leads to intuitive flow of continual play and succeeded in softening the learning curve of its innate complexity of this kind for newbies.
4. all of these things are done with abstraction from masterpiece of the past by the persons who know real thing and the taste. and its well executed and standout like popular standard music with clear, catchy melody line.

i feel devs of Depth of Extinction are concerning for this point of view. easy to start but deep at the core, intuitive and addictive. all is contributing to good pacing.
additionally, good integration of random elements to strengthen replayability which was lack in new X-Com.