Waylon's Story - Open Beta 2.8.1 Available! [Discontinued]

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Okay, I've played through the whole of the demo and this is what I've got to say about it.

General

  • Homer's animation on the main menu looks very awkward on Smithers, probably change it to another one.
  • Homer's voice clips on the menu have not been replaced.
  • Loading newspaper was made by me, and I was not credited anywhere.
  • The coin counter when you pause the game looks very awkward. Was this intentional? Because it looks like a mistake.
  • Similarly to the menu, Homer's animations don't really fit Smithers (his arms stick very far out to the side) I think ideally you should make it a mixed animation set, combining the NPC animations along with some from other charactesrs.
  • Smithers needs more voicelines than the vanilla game has. So like for running, calling cars from a phonebooth, beginning/completing a mission, etc.
  • Radar is pretty neat, but looks out of place against the blue HUD. In the end it's just unpleasing to look at.
  • Speaking of the blue HUD, it also looks pretty nice but blends in too much with the dark environment.
  • Where is the Hit & Run meter? I don't mean to sound rude, but I hate mods that cover the Hit & Run meter up. It's just a cheap way to get difficulty, real difficulty should come from the missions.
  • Outline colour for the road on the radar should also be made slightly darker than the main road colour.
  • The plain glass replacing the Krusty Glass works well, but now doesn't make sense as to why they'd be there. With the Krusty Glass you get the explanation of it being a promotion for Buzz Cola, but here it's just random glass placed over roads.
  • The regular Hit & Run logo (for like saving and all that) needs properly replaced, not just recoloured.
  • Why was the Yes/No text for failing a mission moved? It's far too far apart, even with the Skip option.
  • What is this mod supposed to be about, exactly? At the moment it seems like just random stuff that Smithers does. A good mod should have a clear focus on a single thing, and expand on it over a full level or two.

Mission 0

  • Is dialogue planned? Because it would help convey the story much nicer.
  • The briefing text says 'a new day has started' however it is late into the evening.
  • Why were the continue and loading text moved? They were much better where they were before.
  • Mission name could probably be improved, just taking the name from the L7 bonus mission is pretty lazy.
  • HUD icons for getting in a car shouldn't have the picture of the car, because the player could be using a different vehicle leading to confusion.
Overall, not a bad mission, if a bit lacking in variety. But hey, it's the tutorial so that doesn't matter too much.

Mission 1

  • Alright, bit lost on this one. Why do I warp outside after talking to Burns? As far as I can tell all that happens is a couple of iris wipes for no reason. Is there supposed to be dialog here? Genuinely confused.
  • Why does Burns want to go to the Power Plant? I have no idea what's going on at this point.
  • Burns should probably be placed in the car next to Smithers.
  • What does 'DRIVE FORMALLY' mean? And what is that bar doing on the screen? I'm getting more and more confused.
  • The 'supervise' objective should be made more clear. I ended up wandering off into Homer's workstation unsure of what to do, and the escaping workers threw me offguard.
  • Why are workers even up this late? In the vanilla game Homer gets dismissed from work towards midday, and can be seen at the house in L4.

Mission 2

  • Homer's neck clips through the bottom of the HUD ring. Needs some more work.
  • The carsphere is far too big, use a triggersphere for this.
  • In the briefing text there shouldn't be a comma after 'presumably'
  • It's also 'a donut truck', not just 'donut truck'.
  • The donut truck objective is very long and unenjoyable.
  • Why does Smithers not know where Homer lives? He's been there multiple times himself, and the Power Plant must have records of their employees' addresses.
  • The donut truck's shadow is too big at the back. I know I used to make this mistake a lot while making mods, but it bugs the hell out of me.
  • The donut truck missed a checkpoint around the Kwik-E-Mart and did a U-turn to get back. While it didn't directly cause issues, the half extents should be increased.
  • Is there a reason why Homer starts chasing you so you can lure him back to the plant? I've been thinking and I can't really come up with anything. The story in this mod should be made much more clear.
  • Homer's suspension is all messed up (his wheels clip through the body and out the top). You should make a new CON file with fixed suspension instead of just using CON files designed for other vehicles.

Mission 3

  • Again, grammar errors.
    • 'the safety inspector'
    • 'pipes have broken'
  • Starting location here is really awkward and bugs the camera out. Try starting in the main room instead.
  • Is the HUD icon here temporary? It looks like a bootleg Windows logo.
  • I also drove the complete wrong way due to taking the shortcut and then being completely confused. Try and make it more clear.
  • The leaks should be a more unique collectible, as opposed to just a triggersphere.
  • The timer between leaks is far too short, considering you have a number of factors that can slow you down (door animation, exiting on the wrong side, getting in to your car instead of triggering the collectible.) The result is a stage that isn't fun to play at all.
  • The radar in the Kwik-E-Mart stage is very awkward, and I got lost and went the wrong way.
  • The Kwik-E-Mart stage is very long and boring, try doing something to spice it up a little. Maybe an objective that activates along the way? For me, if a goto timer is over one minute then it isn't going to be fun.
  • The 'Item Lost' text doesn't really work, because if it gives the wrong impression of what's going on. 'Item Dropped' in the vanilla game works much better.
  • The second waste position is very awkward and hard to get to if you miss the shortcut, or overshoot. Consider moving it forward.
  • Again, another mysterious stage that I don't understand. This time I'm just dumped on the ground, and then an iriswipe happens a moment later. What are these for? Is there something I'm missing here? If so, it really needs to be made more clear, as I have no clue what on earth is happening.
  • Again, just like mission 1, what does 'drive formally' mean? And what is that bar for?
In the end this is by far the worst mission in the mod. It feels like there's 3 different missions here, but none of them feel rewarding or satisfying in the slightest. If you fail you have to go through this mess all over again and it just makes you want to stop playing. The whole idea of the waste thief seems shoehorned in to make it longer, as does Burns' stage. It's something this mod could have done without.

My final conclusion of this mod is that it's somewhat decent, with bits of fun scattered about However it suffers from the exact same issues as Springfield Noire did, which is uninteresting missions, long boring objectives, and a general feel of unfinishedness. I understand it's a demo, but demos are meant to be a polished preview of what the mod is about. This feels like a beta build with a lazily slapped-on ending.

I hope that you find this review helpful and improve apon these faults. This has potential to be a good mod, don't get me wrong, but this potential isn't being expanded upon.
Thanks for the review, Colou! Now I'm gonna answer these "questions"

Overall
1-2. Main menu animations, sounds and the rest IS going to be replaced, later though
3. I just copied HA's folder to make this mod. I will eventually replace the paper
4. Everything seems fine, but, I can't find what exactly causes this
5. Gonna be replaced
6. Gonna be added
7. Will try to do something with this
8. Well, can't do anything about it. It's not really dark to merge with the background
9. Added some extra difficulty with this one. Think I'm gonna add some option to hide/show H&R meter
10. Gonna be added
11. It's currently a placeholder, will think about what I can add there
12. Will eventualy be replaced. As for now, recoloured logo will be there
13. Will re-move those options
14. Oh, the fun begins after M3, mod's plot gonna be revealed a bit later though

M0
1. Yes it is, it's just a little bit hard to find some fitting dialogues for me
2. Uh...
3. Because later ingame mission info text will overlap those text bits, and...uh...It's better to move the text than cut half of the mission information
4. Names will eventually be changed, as I'm not good in this sort of things
5. Usually no one uses a different car, so...

M1
1. Supposed to be a little cutscene where Burns walks down to the car. I've better remove those later on
2. Nightshift. Should've mentioned that
3. Due to plot, it will look ridiculous, so, nope
4. Drive Formally thing means, that you need to drive to the Power Plant without StoneCutters tunnel. There's only two instances of this shit, so, shouldn't be that annoying
5. Will try to do something with it
6. Nightshift

M2
1. Consider it's fixed
2. Original SHaR used carsphere for L1M4, so...
3-4. I need more practice in grammatics
5. I suck at follow stages
6. Because...Uh...Well...You know...One thing I shoul....Excuse me for one second
7, 8, 10 - Will. Be. Fixed
9. Perhaps because of dialogue absence? I should really start working hard on them

M3
1. Ну я идиот, нужно больше практики
2. Will be done
3. Supposed to combine every category (object, character, location, car) but under the question mark. I obviously can't make a leaking pipe as a HUD icon, since I'm especially bad in arts (I once made a cemetery Icon completely manually, selecting redundant pixels and deleting them. Otherwise I'd fucked the image completely)
4. Yeah
5. Yeah
6. Will do
7. Not really sure what'd you mean here?
8. Don't really know what to put here. Will try something though
9. HA ripoffs
10. Will be moved
11. Supposed to be a cut-fucking-scene
12. See M1^

I now see, that this mod has a great potential...To become a third failure in a row. I'm not gonna give up though, and I will try everything I can to, atleast, make fun and interesting missions
Alright, thanks for the response but I think there's some stuff that needs clearing up.

9. Added some extra difficulty with this one. Think I'm gonna add some option to hide/show H&R meter
I'm not sure if you understood what I said the first time around. I know it's to add difficulty, but it's just an incredibly cheap way of getting "difficulty" If a mod relies solely on short time limits and cheap difficulty increases, it won't be fun to play. It will be annoying to play. When making missions with challenge, it's important to maintain that "I failed, but I know I can do this!" feeling. So it's hard but it's fun, and when you fail you learn to not make the same mistake.

14. Oh, the fun begins after M3
This worries me slightly about your attitude to modding. If your mod only gets good at Mission 3 (halfway through the first level I might add) then that's not the way to mod. It feels to me like you're going for quantity over quality, Every mission should be fun in it's own right. A lot of care went into Storm Over Springfield to make it feel like the quality of missions never dipped, and each one was as good as the last.

5. Usually no one uses a different car, so...
If you just dismiss something like this with "Oh, nobody will do that so it's fine" then that makes it even more of a problem, especially when someone has actually pointed it out to you, because they tried it. If you desperately want an icon, do what Donut Mod does and have a silhouette of the car with a white question mark over the top of it.

3. Due to plot, it will look ridiculous, so, nope
How will making Burns into a passenger look ridiculous? It's not like a permanent feature or anything, just for this mission (and the end of M3 too) It's like in Storm Over Springfield both M1 and M7 have passengers, but they're not there all the time.

4. Drive Formally thing means, that you need to drive to the Power Plant without StoneCutters tunnel. There's only two instances of this shit, so, shouldn't be that annoying
It's not that it's annoying, it's that it's confusing because it's never properly explained in the mod. And you still haven't said what that strange bar is for.

2. Original SHaR used carsphere for L1M4, so...
I don't know when the last time you played SHAR was, but L1M4 uses a triggersphere.


6. Because...Uh...Well...You know...One thing I shoul....Excuse me for one second
For one, responding to a legitimate complaint with Steamed Hams is effectively dismissing it. On the other hand if you moved Homer to somewhere else, perhaps closer to the powerplant then you would fix this issue and also reduce the length of the follow objective.

7. Not really sure what'd you mean here?
I mean it points off into the side so it's very hard to tell which way is the correct way to go.

9. HA ripoffs
What? I'm sorry but...what's that supposed to mean?

11. Supposed to be a cut-fucking-scene
Bit unnecessary on the 'fucking', and also dismissive of the issue. If it's a cutscene then you should use a camera to focus on the action, as it's too easy to miss.

In fact I feel the whole response to M3 was a bit dismissive, as in my opinion it's just a mission that doesn't work at all. A good mission should have one clear goal, not several.

Anyway, didn't mean to create another long post, but there's my response to your response to my response.
Are you gonna be releasing any more Demos or is this all we have to go on until the full release?
Probably willl re-relase the demo at some point, since I made a lot of changes to the first four missions
UPD 3
Hey!
Gotta inform you, that every main mission of L1 has been finished, I'm now moving up to L2. Bonus missions, dialogues, cards and other kind of polishing will be added when all the main missions are gonna get finished and finalized
As for now, I've updated the demo! L1M0 features a prototype version of cutscene-dialogue, L1M1-L1M3 were polished and practically finalized. I've also added L1M4 and L1M5(featuring custom vehicle, custom skin requirable to proceed, and new, custom music!)
Enjoy the Demo! This is probably going to be the final one, but, who knows?
I've got a suggestion for a banner (like my wnter theme's) :" Waylon's Story - Are you ready for three levels of fun fun fun? "
This actually sounds neat
Probs will add this
I thought this was better than the first demo but there are still some things I would like to point out.

Cutscenes:
They feel very bland. There should be different pictures of the character depending on their mood. Mr Burns has lost hi things but he has a big grin on his face. Speaking of Mr Burns he sounded very out of character. He's meant to be evil and hateful but in this he just sounds like a concerned man. Just adding 'Excellent doesn't make him the character. Last of all, I didn't like how quiet they were. Add some background music or sounds in.

Tutorial:
Not much to say here. All of my problems with this mission were stated in the previous section

Mission 1:
Improved over the first demo. I think you should make it clearer that Mr burns is in the back of the limo. Instead of the awkward cutscene at the beginning, Smithers should have to walk over to the back to open it.

Mission 2:
Not much to say but why do we have to stop Homer before he gets to his house? We can still follow him. I would recommend putting down a time limit instead.

Mission 3:
The race is fine but when I took the big ramp behind the fire truck I missed one of the checkpoints. Also, we didn't fix the holes, instead we just drove into the power plant.

Mission 4:
Did we have to talk to Mr Burns before driving to the kwik-e-mart? It just adds some extra time that was unneeded. I also find it a bit wierd that Smithers didn't say anything when he saw the sedan leaving the mansion. All you needed to do is add 'Wait a minute? Where did that car come from?' at the end of the text when you drive home. Finally, in the mission, I don't see the point of the sedan being there when your picking up the objects. You should change it to a 'follow and collect objective instead.

Mission 5:
When it tells me to buy the car tinted is misspelled as tainted. It should tell you to buy the outfit first since your right outside of the kwik-e-mart instead of making drive all the way back (or mission warp). This mission is also really loud with the 3 sirens going off at once, the hit and run music and the van motor. I had my volume half way and it was still giving me a headache. Try and change some of the sounds for that mission. I also feel like the part where you run from the cops is too long. It should be changed to 1 minute instead of 2.

Overall I think There still need to be some improvements but it's a good start and I'm excited for the third demo.
Edit: my slogan is based off smithers's line "are you ready for fun fun fun?"
And.. i suggest you to remove the always changing non suspicious m4 van. The fact that it has things like "Hi Jaymate" or other modders dosn't fit with ts suspicious purpose un my opinion.
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