Author Topic: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune - Director's Cut  (Read 3521 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline jg18

  • A very happy zod
  • 210
  • can do more than spellcheck
Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune - Director's Cut
I have no idea how I missed this, considering I play absolutely everything with voice acting. Downloading now...

Please leave feedback
What Dekker said. Enjoy! :)

 

Offline Vidmaster

  • 211
  • Inventor of FS2 bullettime ;-)
Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune - Director's Cut
So, I played this...     and while I am certainly impressed, the actual battle of Neptune left me pretty cold. In-mission dialog and the writing in general are solid and the whole cinematic chaos-of-battle thing that BP does so well is present here too. There is nothing "functionally" wrong with the experience, I reckon that it is probably the single-mission nature of the experience that causes its failure to affect me. There is tons and tons of info frontloaded and then the mission begins with a rather slow beginning that, once the action starts, can go horribly wrong quickly because it is Blue Planet's battlescape.
It is hard to point out exactly what is missing from the experience, but it is missing that certain undefined something.

Note that I was super-confused when dying for the first time after the initial two cruisers were gone, as there was apparently a checkpoint at this time but that seem to remember a failure to escort a wing (and a subsequent objective failure) that had not yet happend in my playthrough, although it might have occured while my ship was exploding. Maybe my experience simply started off on the wrong foot.

Finally, I know its a feature but I think those airplane-sounds are just annoying. I am flying a cool space fighter, I do not care about a F-16-something-style sound not fitting the soundscape of the rest of the experience. I just find it distracting, especially if you keep getting "tone"...

While Neptune was not for me, I have much stronger praise for the bonus mission. That one was ****ing brilliant, with excellent pacing, interesting decisions, avoid the frontloading-pitfalls and overall well written characters (although I do think the final *public* emotional breakdown + shakedown by Alpha Leader is a bit much) and a wonderful in-mission arc. I can wholeheartedly recommend playing that mission to everybody without any doubt, was a superbly designed experience. I cannot help but wonder if there is some out-of-game background to this mission I fail to grasp...
« Last Edit: December 11, 2021, 12:31:48 pm by Vidmaster »
Devoted member of the Official Karajorma Fan Club (Founded and Led by Mobius).

Does crazy Software Engineering for a living, until he finally musters the courage to start building games for real. Might never happen.

 

Offline Iain Baker

  • 29
  • 'Sup?
    • Steam
    • Twitter
    • NOMAD's Reviews
Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune - Director's Cut
Vid master - I would recommend playing it at least twice, it is very hectic which can be a little confusing. It is also mentally taxing keeping up with everything while trying not to die 😜 If there was one thing I would change it would be making the intercepted hostile coms sound more distinct from friendly coms. Perhaps by using more distortion or something similar to that used in BSG. This was something I found a little confusing with BP WiH in general.
Wanna check out my video games, technology and media website? If so, visit; https://www.nomadsreviews.co.uk/

Interested in hiring my freelance writing, proof-reading, editing, SEO, TTSO, Web Development or Social Media Management services? If so, please messege me at [email protected]

 

Offline Vidmaster

  • 211
  • Inventor of FS2 bullettime ;-)
Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune - Director's Cut
Nah, the sensory overload is spot on  :nod:, that is not the problem and should be in there, since this is basically a fan mission for BP. Like I said, I think there is a bigger issue when it comes to the pacing of the entire mission, including the briefing. Of course it is heartbreaking if one hears that a player thinks the experience is not working for that player :sigh: but for me, it did not work.

Note that I believe that Delenda Est is probably the single best mission I have ever played in my almost 20 years of Freespace, it is not the BP-style that is the problem, I do think it is this mission. Like I said, there is nothing functionally wrong here but it just does not really manage to woe me :nervous:. If I could more clearly point out what the problem is, I would do it.

Again, I think the bonus mission is the much stronger offering of the two.
Devoted member of the Official Karajorma Fan Club (Founded and Led by Mobius).

Does crazy Software Engineering for a living, until he finally musters the courage to start building games for real. Might never happen.

 

Offline Dilmah G

  • Failed juggling
  • 211
  • Do try it.
Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune - Director's Cut
Yo Vidmaster, thanks for giving it a playthrough! And sorry I haven't replied earlier, just in the middle of moving houses/states, so precious forum time has been hard to come by. Overall, to be honest, I totally feel your points on the BoN mission proper - especially on the pitfalls of frontloading tens of pages of info before the player hits the mission. That's something I didn't appreciate until I watched Red Mage Joe playing through it on his stream, but upon reflection, I think I felt the (unwarranted) need to pad the mod out on its original release to justify it being a single mission standalone mod. If I was going to FRED it again today, I would probably move some of the CBs to the Tech Room and slim down the briefing a fair bit. It also wasn't particularly character driven in the same way the bonus mission was, so the emotional attachment one feels to characters in the BP-verse wasn't really there. I suspect that could definitely contribute to a lack of something that's a bit hard to put your finger on. In any case, no creative offering is going to resonate with every single person it touches, but I really appreciate your feedback.

On the other hand, I'm glad you enjoyed the bonus mission - that was a true team effort from the community, and was a lot of fun to write (and re-write) and FRED. In terms of out-of-game background, it was influenced heavily by the experiences of some of the people I served in the military with, as well as a small amount of my own experience. I was fortunate enough to serve in what was virtually a peacetime Army by the time I had finished my training, but many of the more senior soldiers/officers I served with had been in combat. They had some harrowing stories that I hope I did some justice to, but also some very interesting (read: severely unhealthy) coping mechanisms and thought processes in response to combat stress and survivor guilt. There were also some tremendously angry people amongst them who demonstrated rage on a level I don't think I'll ever see again in my life. The perception of war that I had after all of that was of bands of extremely young adults being asked to make decisions far beyond their years, of being constantly emotionally and physically frayed by stress and sleep deprivation, and there rarely being a right decision, with the only wrong decision being to make no decision. And that all of that over a prolonged period of time would either turn you into a wreck, a psychopath, or both, with only a very small handful of people emerging as stereotypical "good people". While not every part of that mission may have landed for everyone, I'm glad to hear it at least mostly landed for you. I'm certainly looking forward to working on some similar stuff in the coming year.

 

Offline jg18

  • A very happy zod
  • 210
  • can do more than spellcheck
Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune - Director's Cut
Hey Vidmaster, thanks for sharing your honest thoughts in detail!

I'm really glad to hear you liked the bonus mission overall. As Dilmah said, a number of people (including yours truly :)) put a lot into it. While I'm very happy with how it came together, I understand there'll be a range of reactions to it, and that's totally cool, of course.

I wasn't aware just how intensely personal the bonus mission was for you, Dilmah!

Besides the Kobayashi Maru angle that perihelion mentioned (had to look up what that was), another thing I like about the bonus mission is
Spoiler:
While the mission as a whole is a no-win, the first decision point is effectively a no-lose. As long as the player doesn't ask Delta 1 for orders (i.e., equivalent of taking no action), either decision leads to the same result. To me, Dilmah's point there is that, even with successful outcomes, your decisions sometimes simply don't matter. It's in stark contrast to just about all other missions out there.

I'm certainly looking forward to working on some similar stuff in the coming year.
Oh? ;7



EDIT: Clarifications.
« Last Edit: December 13, 2021, 04:34:05 pm by jg18 »

 
Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune - Director's Cut
Oh damn, that bonus mission looks amazing.

 

Offline Colonol Dekker

  • HLP is my mistress
  • 213
  • Aken Tigh Dekker
    • My old squad sub-domain
Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune - Director's Cut
@Dilmah


Like the hulk, we're always angry 🤣

 

Offline Vidmaster

  • 211
  • Inventor of FS2 bullettime ;-)
Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune - Director's Cut
Oh damn, that bonus mission looks amazing.
It is the highlight here, as weird as that may sound. It is absolutely brilliant.
Devoted member of the Official Karajorma Fan Club (Founded and Led by Mobius).

Does crazy Software Engineering for a living, until he finally musters the courage to start building games for real. Might never happen.

 
Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune - Director's Cut
still getting "attempt to load mission failed", log: https://fsnebula.org/log/61c042f1cd283f42c22001de

 

Offline jg18

  • A very happy zod
  • 210
  • can do more than spellcheck
Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune - Director's Cut
Oh damn, that bonus mission looks amazing.
It is the highlight here, as weird as that may sound. It is absolutely brilliant.
Well, if someone wanted to play only the bonus mission ("Command Responsibility"), they could use the mission simulator in the tech room. Pressing Ctrl+Shift+S while on that screen will show all available missions.

The perception of war that I had after all of that was of bands of extremely young adults being asked to make decisions far beyond their years, of being constantly emotionally and physically frayed by stress and sleep deprivation, and there rarely being a right decision, with the only wrong decision being to make no decision. And that all of that over a prolonged period of time would either turn you into a wreck, a psychopath, or both [..]
Spoiler:
Thanks for making Delta 1 from the first category and not the second or third. ;)

still getting "attempt to load mission failed", log: https://fsnebula.org/log/61c042f1cd283f42c22001de
Not sure if this is your issue, but I was getting a crash on mission load until I went to the Campaigns menu and selected Battle of Neptune. I think the main hall you see should be the one from FS2 retail and not the one from Blue Planet.

 

Offline Dilmah G

  • Failed juggling
  • 211
  • Do try it.
Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune - Director's Cut
Let us know how you go, taoofcrime! It's late over here, but it looks like the custom HUD gauges have been throwing up errors from what I can see of that log. That being said, I was getting those in FRED for some reason but still managed to load and play the mission. If the issue hasn't been resolved, are you getting any error prompts prior to "attempt to load mission failed"?
Spoiler:
Thanks for making Delta 1 from the first category and not the second or third. ;)
Spoiler:
Of course! I think you've got some mean psychopath potential for the next project though. ;)