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sswift

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Everything posted by sswift

  1. In one of the last episodes of the documentary you were discussing a problem where the player could take Shay or Vella's story to completion, or near completion and then they'd be stuck because there would be some information they needed that they couldn't go back to get. What exactly was the problem you were referring to, and how did you resolve it?
  2. http://www.appunwrapper.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/IMG_6958.jpg
  3. I missed that, and as a result asked Tim during the help line what the long term effects of Omicron radiation poisoning were. He said, "Uh... You grow really tall? And gain a bulbous forehead?"
  4. I too walked all the way back to Carol several times. Is the teleport option the first or second one? I think I kept choosing the last option because that's usually the one that makes you exit a conversation so it was just natural to. Maybe they should add some text to indicate one option teleports you back to Carol.
  5. I just realized I failed to bring the fish to the lumberjack to get his commentary on it. I wonder if he had any good lines.
  6. I thought the mom and dad were video conferencing with Shay all along from beyond the plague dam. I thought Marek was surely not the Dad since the voice actor was different, so he would probably be Shay's brother, to balance out his family with Vella's, or an uncle, because he sounded so much older and creepier. I thought Alex would be related to Shay in some way. A distant relative. Great great great uncle, or something. Due to Alex's line about the people from Steel Bunting being a bunch of badasses, I thought the result of Vella's fighting Mog Chothra would be the citizens of Sugar Bunting reverting to some warlike state to save their village that they believed would surely be destroyed, possibly attacking the ship when it returns with Vella on it. I'd hoped we'd get to visit Loruna, and see what life there is like. From comments made in the documentary, I assumed there would be some problem with pollution making the citizens sick and sterile, and it would be Vella's job to shut down their reactor against their wishes to show them that that's the source of their ills. And I thought the surprise mom had planned for Shay would be revealing the maidens for him to choose a bride. I'm glad I was wrong though. I'd rather be surprised, than right.
  7. By far, my favorite joke was the sad sack. That drawing of Shay with the snake was also excellent. I also enjoyed the kitten reading a newspaper. It took a while for me to notice that when Curtis moved it the base of the mold had become a litter box though! And I got the Terminator reference at the end there, but for a moment, I thought Grabbin' Gary was giving Shay the finger!
  8. Does cosplay count as fan art? Hey guys, Full disclosure: Usually, I make my costumes completely from scratch, but in this case I decided to do Manny the night before the con using a suit I already had, so in the interests of not screwing it up, I used a template for the mask which I found here: http://www.monsterandmonster.com/2012/03/paper-face-friday-manny-calavera/ Making the mask wasn't as simple as printing it out of course, as I didn't have access to a large format printer to print it on the two sheets of 2x2' posterboard I used. Instead, I printed each side out on six sheets of card stock, taped them together, and cut the shapes out with a razor so I could then trace them onto the posterboard. I then filled in the black portions with paint marker. I also modified the design by cutting out the eyes and gluing some black fabric in their place. It was still really hard to see though. I could make out the environment well enough to walk around, but I couldn't recognize people or read signs until I was right on top of them. The pan de muertos (bread of the dead) was made using a couple foam half loaves from Hobby Lobby that I glued together. They promptly broke in half again at the con at which point I had to resort to clear tape I had on hand to repair the mask. And boy did that thing need repairs. It kept tearing, mostly at the seams around the base of the neck. The gloves too needed constant care. I used adhesive foam and a little fabric glue to attach the bones to some nylon gloves but neither held very well. Next time I think I'd use non-adhesive foam and be a little heavier on the fabric glue. I also had a Robert Frost balloon, but it ended up being blue because it was my first attempt making balloon animals and I ended up bursting my only five orange balloons after my first successful attempt making the blue version. Doh! Pro-tip: after you inflate the balloon all the way, let half the air out. Oh, and it's impossible to create the shape seen in the game, the balloons simply won't stay in that kind of shape. Who'd have thought they'd put an impossible balloon animal in a video game? If I'd had more time I'd have probably attempted to make the scythe as well, but alas, it was a last minute costume idea. Maybe next time!
  9. I haven't looked at the mom spoiler image because that's cheating, so here's my theories on what's going on: Loruna, the plague dam and interstellar travel: I don't think Shay is actually from another planet. I think he and Alex are from Vella's world, and came from beyond the plague dam, whatever that is. Why they're being tricked into thinking they're on an interstellar mission is unclear, but perhaps it's to keep them in the ship until they're of age. If they knew of the world outside they'd want to explore it. The mom and dad: "Why do computers need to sleep?" - Shay Because she's not a computer, is the obvious answer. But are she and the dad on the ship? I doubt it. I think they're remotely operating the ship from beyond the plague dam. And they're lying to Shay about their being computers and the whole situation so that again, he doesn't try to escape or go to them. I also don't believe the Dad and Marek are the same person. The Dad was shown to be asleep when Shay snuck out of bed and went to visit Marek. Their voices are different, their mannerisms different... There's simply nothing that indicates they are one and the same person. Who is Marek then? And how did he get on the ship? I have no idea. I am inclined to believe him though when he says he is a recent stowaway. He doesn't otherwise appear to be a good liar. Shay - "I'd better go check on them..." Marek - "Uh... no! I mean..." "That's enough! Uh, I mean... enemy ships are approaching!" The surprise: The mom has a surprise for Shay. Is it the maidens? I don't see how it could be. Not unless she were working with Marek and she doesn't appear to be. She tried to prevent the ship from even traveling to the other systems. So what is the surprise? Perhaps the surprise was to learn the whole truth about mom and dad? Alex and Mog Chothra: Did Alex inadvertently cause the whole Mog Chothra sacrifice schtick? I don't think so. First, I believe it's been said MC has been visiting for 100 years. But Alex has been in cryosleep for 300. And while it is conceivable his ship could be seen as a giant monster, it's clear that even though we can't see his ship that it is of a different design than Shay's, thanks to the dead eye god's "pyramid" which forms the observation deck. Mom: Was she a sacrifice girl? She indicates she made a sacrifice. And Shay refers to the story of the sacrifice girl. But I think this is Tim misdirecting us as he dd with Alex. Mom may have had to sacrifice something... and like Vella may have rebelled causing some terrible calamity... but I don't think she was a girl that was sacrificed to Mog Chothra. As for how they're going to wrap all this up neatly in Act 2, I have no idea. It seems like there's enough mystery and intrigue here that it would take a third act to tie it all up nice and neat without rushing it. End of Act 2 we learn the truth about mom and dad, and what's really been going on. Act 3... we fix everything. We could have Vella learn from the mom, dad, and Marek what's really been going on early in the second act, but then Shay's left in the dark. He gets to realize the same thing we have, that the alien creatures were actually maidens, but where will he learn about what's really up with mom, dad, and Marek? From Alex, and his ship? They've been out of the loop for 300 years and he doesn't seem to know what's really going on either. And the townspeople sure as heck don't know.
  10. I think that's exactly what they are. You can see a holodeck-like shimmer on the wall by the door in the avalanche scene.
  11. I'm curious... what happens if you get the helmet, go through the teleporters, put it on, and then try to return before you've placed the dampener on the orb? Does Shay remove the helmet before going back through the teleporter so it doesn't get destroyed?
  12. I have an idea: Move the egg. Instead of placing it where you land on it after falling through the hole the first time, place it near the guy, and when he grabs you and struggles, have him kick it over into the nest, where you can then collect it by falling through the hole.
  13. *** SPOILERS *** Allow me to introduce you to the concept of DARK HUMOR: Notice how the maidens had phrases like "EAT ME" scrawled on their dresses made to look like cakes? Also, you're assuming the maidens died. All evidence points to them being alive and well. It's still absurd. As absurd as a family joyously sacrificing their children dressed as cakes to a giant tentacled monster. In a game where the environments are absurd, why should the emotional reactions of the characters to all the absurdity going on around them make any more sense? Within the context of the game they make sense. That's all that matters. You want me to refer to a science fiction TV show for its realistic portrayal of space travel? Don't you think it would be better to refer to our actual space programs, or to research missions in Antarctica, or to military personnel stuck for months in a submarine? Anyway, there's plenty to indicate Shay is unhappy and depressed. He doesn't want to eat anything. And when he goes on the missions after the third time round he's like "What does it matter?". And when you click on anything during those missions he sighs: "Fake." Then there is how overjoyed he is when the train derails, and he is apparently falling to his death. Of course, having been on the ship and protected for so long, he probably has no fear of death or even of getting a papercut. He's faced so little real danger that he calls a plastic knife dangerous and doesn't think twice about cutting his air hose and leaping into space with nothing but a bottle of shaving cream to provide propulsion.
  14. Why are we discussing metaphors? These things shouldn't be excused because of metaphor. They should be excused because of COMEDY. Did Curse of Monkey Island make any sense? Pirates didn't fight with insults. Soda machines didn't exist in the 16th century. Starker is right, you're overthinking this. If you're gonna nit pick, why start with something mundane like Shay's relative normalcy, or Vella's acceptance of being chosen to be eaten, when there's a whole city of people living in the clouds who can apparently float by wearing shoes with feathers, and Shay lives on a ship that is apparently fueled by yarn?
  15. The budget for Broken Sword was over $800K: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Broken_Sword_5:_The_Serpent's_Curse Also I think it's safe to assume that being the 5th iteration they didn't have to write an engine from scratch, and their art pipeline was pretty streamlined. That equals more time for their programmers and artists to spend creating content instead of writing graphics and interface code and experimenting with different art styles and shaders. As for voice actors, they don't work for free, and Elijah Wood was only one of many. Broken Sword 5 on the other hand doesn't seem to use professional voice actors. You can save a lot of money when the voice "talent" are your coworkers and their family members. You can see here Double Fine hired 14 different voice actors for part 1 alone: http://www.giantbomb.com/broken-age/3030-37448/credits/ I did some research and it looks like its around $2,500 per hour for a voice actor, and Shay and Vella were probably in there for a full day. So you're probably talking $30K for the other actors and then another $20-30K for Shay and Vella. Musical talent doesn't come cheap either. Broken Age hired a full orchestra for their soundtrack, while Broken Sword uses midi music that is far cheaper to produce and doesn't sound nearly as epic. I can cost upwards of $20K to hire a 50 piece orchestra, and on top of that they had to pay the musician that wrote the pieces a salary. They also had 11 people working on the game, though it seems only 9 of those may have been working on it full time over the last two years. So we'll split the difference and call it 10. And you can see here that the average salary of an employee in the game industry with experience is around $100K: http://www.gamecareerguide.com/features/1108/game_developer_salary_survey_2012.php Multiply each employees salary by an additional third to take into account health insurance and other misc expenses and that's $133K per person for two years. So adding it all up, I calculate the costs to be around $2.75M dollars. That doesn't include the cost of backer rewards, and keep in mind that it's not a good idea to spend every last cent you have developing a game because what happens to the company in the lull between funding one game and the next? It's probably safe to assume they would budget for at least six months beyond the expected completion date in case it takes longer to develop than expected, and another six months of potential downtime. Making games is expensive, and living in San Francisco ain't cheap either. So to answer your question, how can Broken Sword 5 cost so little? They spent 15 months on the game instead of 24, they didn't have to pay for voice actors, or an orchestra, they have fewer employees (8 versus 10), and they probably have half the experience and are being paid half as much. PS: I've worked in the game industry off and on for the last 18 years, so I'm not talking completely out of my ass here.
  16. I'd like to see some puzzles that actually make use of the character switching mechanic. I suspect we may see this, but that it wasn't in Act 1 because it would have spoiled the surprise. I have no idea how this would be worked into the game though.
  17. I'd back another Double Fine adventure game in a heartbeat. Easy or not, it has a great story, and it was $15 for not only (a presumed) 8 hours of gameplay, but also a great documentary that's several hours long. I would have felt I got my money's worth if I'd spent $30 on it.
  18. I'm not sure how to rate it. I found it fairly easy. And I was only stumped for very brief periods. But I'm not sure if being stumped is good or not. Would I have enjoyed myself more if I were stumped on several puzzles for 10 minutes unable to progress with one puzzle keeping me running around trying to find a solution for 30? I don't think so. Of course finally solving a really hard puzzle can be rewarding. Or is that relieving? I'm not sure I liked being stuck for a long time on certain puzzles in Portal 2 for example. That said, while I don't want to say that the game was too easy, I don't mind saying that the puzzles were too simple. A complex puzzle doesn't have to be frustrating. But like, swapping the positions of two items to create a weapon? That was just too simple. If it were three items at least there would have been six possible combinations and I would have had to use my brain a little to determine what the correct order was. Not that I didn't enjoy the game a great deal. I got a far better game than I expected to when I pledged my money. If they had to reduce the complexity of the puzzles for budgetary reasons, then I can totally forgive that.
  19. Well there are others here who think the same, but the poll says we're not in the majority. http://www.doublefine.com/forums/viewthread/11994/
  20. I forgot Wil was playing the role of the lumberjack and when I heard him speak I thought they'd secretly gotten George Clooney.
  21. I think 8 hours of play time is more than adequate. Portal 2 is a AAA game and that is only 10 hours long. It just seems short to people because they only got to play half of it, and because that time was divided between two stories. Also, keep in mind that this Kickstarter was for a small simple adventure game. Double Fine was under no obligation to provide more than that despite raising 10x what they originally asked for. So we're lucky to get an 8 hour game with excellent artwork and animation and music. Furthermore, for the money we didn't just get an adventure game, we also got an excellent multi-part documentary that is over 10 hours long.
  22. So was the whole thing in the documentary about the lumberjack a ruse? I could see Vella going straight from the cloud colony to the beach community, but then where would she get the sap or the stained glass for those puzzles? Was he really shoehorned in towards the end because you became attached to the test figure, or was he always intended to be there from the start?
  23. I'm wondering what happens if you go through the teleporters more than 3 times...
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