Author Topic: [NeoLemmix] [New Formats] NeoLemmix Introduction Pack  (Read 371 times)

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Offline Nessy

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[NeoLemmix] [New Formats] NeoLemmix Introduction Pack
« on: January 25, 2018, 09:03:24 pm »
After discussing this with Nepster and IchoTolot on IRC, we have decided now that the new format version of NeoLemmix is stable, it's time to give the NeoLemmix Introduction Pack a major update to reflect these changes and new features.

For those of you that don't know the NeoLemmix Introduction Pack is designed for players who are not only new to NeoLemmix, but Lemmings in general. The pack is meant to teach new players about NeoLemmix skills, mechanics, objects, etc.

So first thing is first. We need to come up with a game plan for this.


1) We decide how to split up the pack

We could split the pack up into five ranks:

- A rank for showcasing all skills, both classic and new. Each skill will have a tutorial level and small puzzle level after.
- A rank for showcasing NeoLemmix objects and gadgets. Once again each will have a tutorial and puzzle level.
- A rank for special behaviors such as the deadly sides and ceiling.
- A rank for some basic hotkeys. For example, using hotkeys for directional select.
- A rank for some more puzzles to test everything the player has learned so far.


2) We decide what to include or remove

Here is a list of everything the pack will teach so far:

- Infinite and finite time
- Instant bombers
- The deadly edges and ceiling
- One-way arrows in all directions (including up)
- Steel that isn't straight-edged
- Release rate manipulation and locked release rates
- Pre-placed lemmings
- Highlighting a lemming
- Pre-assigned skills
- Zombies
- All NeoLemmix skills (no Shimmier yet)
- One-way force fields
- Pick-up skills (single and multiple-in-one)
- Updrafts
- Teleporters
- Buttons and locked exits
- Splat pads
- Splitters
- One-use traps
- Levels with vertical scrolling
- Clear physics mode
- Fall height ruler
- Talismans


3) We fix and decide what to recycle or create anew

A lot of these things already exist in the latest version (V1.6) of the NeoLemmix Introduction Pack so there is no need to create a new level for them. However, we don't have to recycle everything. We can have a discussion to redo some existing levels if someone can come up with a good alternate level for it. On the other hand, some levels that were tutorials for culled objects such as Slowfreeze and Radiation will have to be removed and/or replaced.

Also levels that relay on ceiling behavior need to be fixed.


I will take the torch and be responsible for everything, but everyone is welcomed to jump in and help: correct me if I'm wrong somewhere, add your thoughts, create new levels, edit existing ones, etc.


« Last Edit: January 26, 2018, 05:41:09 pm by Nessy »

Offline namida

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Re: [NeoLemmix] [New Formats] NeoLemmix Introduction Pack
« Reply #1 on: January 26, 2018, 02:22:53 am »
The existing pack is really designed for those who are familiar with Lemmings in general, but are new to NeoLemmix (although some of the puzzle levels are pretty neat ones that even experienced players might enjoy). But my intention was always to, for the new formats version (which would then be included with the main game), expand the introduction pack to make it suitable for those who are new to Lemmings in general.

Offline Nepster

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Re: [NeoLemmix] [New Formats] NeoLemmix Introduction Pack
« Reply #2 on: January 26, 2018, 05:12:58 pm »
2) We decide what to include or remove
Yes, I agree with namida that extending the pack to new-comers would be worthwhile. So I would modify the list a bit:
- Infinite time: I would rather introfuce the opposite, namely time limits. There are two reasons: Time limits are the restrictions people have to watch for, while it is irrelevant for people to be aware of infinite time or not. Moreover all previous levels will likely have infinite time, so a time limit will be the new thing.
- Locked release rates: Again I would rather introduce the opposite, namely changable RR. Same arguments as ragarding infinite time.
- Splat and anti-splat pads: Anti-splat pads no longer exist. :P
Moreover I would add levels for:
- Levels with vertical scrolling
- Clear physics mode
- Fall height ruler
- Talismans

Offline Nessy

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Re: [NeoLemmix] [New Formats] NeoLemmix Introduction Pack
« Reply #3 on: January 26, 2018, 05:38:59 pm »
Thanks for the feedback.

Quote
- Infinite time: I would rather introfuce the opposite, namely time limits. There are two reasons: Time limits are the restrictions people have to watch for, while it is irrelevant for people to be aware of infinite time or not. Moreover all previous levels will likely have infinite time, so a time limit will be the new thing.
- Locked release rates: Again I would rather introduce the opposite, namely changable RR. Same arguments as ragarding infinite time.

I agree with this... but I still think we should have something that introduces infinite time. My reasoning is that this will be directed towards people that have experience with Lemmings but not with NeoLemmix. Many NeoLemmix newcomers with experience with Lemmings tend to add time limits to levels that don't really require it because of that same experience with the original Lemmings, so introducing infinite time is just a way to say, "Hey, you can do this." However, to avoid confusion towards newcomers that don't have experience with Lemmings or NeoLemmix I would say that finite time should be introduced after infinite time. Have levels where time limit won't be an issue but then introduce one with a time limit and warn the player to start practicing caution as this is now a potential obstacle in a level.

Quote
- Splat and anti-splat pads: Anti-splat pads no longer exist. :P

My mistake :P

Quote
Moreover I would add levels for:
- Levels with vertical scrolling
- Clear physics mode
- Fall height ruler
- Talismans

Very good ideas :thumbsup: Will add them onto the list.

Offline IchoTolot

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Re: [NeoLemmix] [New Formats] NeoLemmix Introduction Pack
« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2018, 03:54:54 pm »
As I went through the old Intro-Pack. I think that we maybe should only take a few of the old levels and start from scratch otherwise.

A high variation of new and old tilesets should help the player learing the differences and unique features between these tilesets, while also providing many new and interesting landscapes.

As we will make only easy levels we must stun the player with high quality visuals. Bare and clinical tutorial levels will result in a negative first experience.

My favorites from the old pack would be:

1-  1 Easy puzzle for 7 basic skills after their introduction (definitly needs more decoration)
1 - 2   Bomber tutorial
1 - 8   Highlight Lemming tutorial
1 - 22 As an easy but still a bit more advanced puzzle

--- Would only maybe add a bit more decoration.

1 - 4, 2 - 8, 2 - 20 I would call a tad too hard.

Offline Nessy

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Re: [NeoLemmix] [New Formats] NeoLemmix Introduction Pack
« Reply #5 on: January 30, 2018, 07:31:51 pm »
Thanks everyone for your feedback and thoughts.

My favorites from the old pack would be:

1-  1 Easy puzzle for 7 basic skills after their introduction (definitly needs more decoration)
1 - 2   Bomber tutorial
1 - 8   Highlight Lemming tutorial
1 - 22 As an easy but still a bit more advanced puzzle

--- Would only maybe add a bit more decoration.

1 - 4, 2 - 8, 2 - 20 I would call a tad too hard.

I agree, so let's definitely have that rank that was suggested in the original post where all it has are these puzzle levels that are a tad too hard to have next to their tutorial counterpart. It can have its own difficulty curve (easy to challenging) as a way to test everything learned in the past ranks. I think this is better so that a player doesn't get stuck while going through the tutorial levels and get discouraged to continue.

I am going to let this thread sit for just a little longer to see if anyone else wants to jump in.

Anybody that would like to help with the level design part of this is more than welcomed to :). I think that the best way (unless someone suggests a better way) to go about this is to allow people to post their levels on this thread. That way I'll collect them and place them in a zip folder in the original post for the sake of keeping everything together (if there are repeats we can always discuss which one is better to keep). It will also be easier to give any feedback.

If you submit a level please write a little note about what the level is teaching if it's a tutorial level, and what its preview screen text that will explain what is going to happen in that level will be like. The same thing applies to levels from the old pack that are being edited.

I'll go ahead and get things started later on today by first including the levels from the old pack we want to carry on through. Please give some more feedback on what others we can recycle exactly like IchoTolot did in his previous post ;)


Thanks!
« Last Edit: February 07, 2018, 09:57:41 pm by Nessy »

Offline IchoTolot

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Re: [NeoLemmix] [New Formats] NeoLemmix Introduction Pack
« Reply #6 on: January 30, 2018, 09:03:44 pm »

I am going to let this thread sit for just a little longer to see if anyone else wants to jump in.

Anybody that would like to help with the level design part of this is more than welcomed to :). I think that the best way (unless someone suggests a better way) to go about this is to allow people to post their levels on this thread. That way I'll collect them and place them in a zip folder in the original post for the sake of keeping everything together (if there are repeats we can always discuss which one is better to keep). It will also be easier to give any feedback.

If you submit a level please write a little note about what the level is teaching if it's a tutorial level, and what its preview screen text that will explain what is going to happen in that level will be like. The same thing applies to levels from the old pack that are being edited.

I think we should handle this a tiny bit different here:

First find the people interested in participating. Of course anybody should be welcomed to help.

After that split up the tasks roughly at least.  --> Person A makes this and that tutorial + a few themed puzzles. Person B this and that object introduction level........

Otherwise we create a risk that multiple entries for the same spot are being made while not knowing about each other at all --> double submissions. Also people quick to submit have the advantage over other people who tend to take their time and that's not always advantageous, especially if somebody takes their time to make mindblowingly complex decorations.  --- I cannot stress enough that easy levels must impress more with their visualy rather than their puzzles.

Offline Proxima

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Re: [NeoLemmix] [New Formats] NeoLemmix Introduction Pack
« Reply #7 on: January 31, 2018, 02:00:05 am »
I agree with Icho, but I'd add that the level intro texts are also extremely important, given the pack's tutorial purpose. In my opinion, the intros in the old pack are much too long and might be off-putting to new players. Either one person should be in charge of writing all the level intros for the pack, or at least, one person should have general permission to edit all the level intros to bring them up to acceptable standards. I'm happy to volunteer for this, and I can also make some levels. I can't set aside very much time for the project right now, but I could at least try to do one per week.

* * *

Regarding the content, I've had a quick play through the "Skills" rank of the old pack -- I chose "Skills" because the idea of making the pack accessible to players who've never seen Lemmings before means that Skills has to come first.

I don't think we should keep the idea of always having one level with just the skill being introduced, then one level combining it with other skills. Firstly, that means the climber, floater, glider and swimmer levels are all going to be essentially the same: "click on n lemmings". Secondly, it means the walker level can only show the turning walker, with the walker's function of stopping other skills being relegated to post-level text. Thirdly, it means that the rank needs no fewer than 36 levels (38 with shimmiers). An intro pack should teach the player what they need to know before playing other packs, certainly. But it should also teach them that the game is fun and interesting. The sooner we can get the player off completely trivial levels and onto real puzzles, the better.

It will be necessary to decide what order we're going to introduce the skills in, since each skill can only be combined with others that have been previously introduced. Some orderings are obvious: the glider, being a more complex version of the floater, must come later (and then its intro text can explicitly compare it to the floater). The blocker should come before the exploder and walker, so that we can show them being applied to blockers.

Possibly, the very first level should be winnable by doing nothing; then its intro text can talk about the basic rules of the game and what the numbers above the skillbar mean. In the old pack, this is explained in a post-level text; but it's pretty infuriating to be told "here's something you should have noticed, but probably didn't".

Some hotkeys should also be introduced either before or alongside skills, particularly fast-forward and 10-second skip :)  And the intro texts should mention the skill shadows (is there an official term for these?)

Regarding Skills 8: as well as being too hard, it's backrouted (at least, I didn't need all the skills given) and uses the Purple tileset with its traps that are invisible unless you know what to look for. I don't like this level at all.

Skills 20 on the other hand I have no problem with, it's a good level for the "exam puzzles" rank.

Offline Nessy

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Re: [NeoLemmix] [New Formats] NeoLemmix Introduction Pack
« Reply #8 on: February 07, 2018, 10:01:02 pm »
Thanks to everyone that gave feedback.

Going to bump this thread up to see if there is anyone else that would like to help out with this project. If absolutely no one comes forward before next week then I think it is safe to start splitting up the work and getting started ;)

Remember that there is no rush as we want to take our time, and of course remembering that "easy levels must impress more with their visually rather than their puzzles".

Offline IchoTolot

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Re: [NeoLemmix] [New Formats] NeoLemmix Introduction Pack
« Reply #9 on: February 07, 2018, 11:06:26 pm »
I am really looking forward helping with this! :thumbsup:

Offline nin10doadict

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Re: [NeoLemmix] [New Formats] NeoLemmix Introduction Pack
« Reply #10 on: February 08, 2018, 03:03:40 am »
I'd like to help with at least writing preview level text. I think I could come up with something good, perhaps with some wordplay. A little alliteration goes a long way. :)

Offline Nessy

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Re: [NeoLemmix] [New Formats] NeoLemmix Introduction Pack
« Reply #11 on: February 08, 2018, 03:12:35 am »
I'd like to help with at least writing preview level text. I think I could come up with something good, perhaps with some wordplay. A little alliteration goes a long way. :)

I support this 100% :) Based off of the preview level text from your current packs you can no doubt bring a sense of informativeness and witty humor to the pack :D