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Just to kick off a discussion...

I would never want to talk shit on a single game and certainly have no desire to pick out a specific game from 20 years for its faults.  There've been plenty of "Worst Adventure Game" threads throughout the years, but...

Since I feel most of us have been playing adventure games for a long time (and some of us may have not been, but the question remains), what are some of the things that have popped up in adventure games that have transfigured joy into irritation or flat out rage?

Not a new question either, of course, but wanted to share my own thoughts on a few things and see what you all thought:

Parser Vs PnC - Possibly the primary question for us old assholes.  I'm a parser fan because of the freedom of exploration.  I also understand, particularly after coming up with a demo in the format, how reliant the experience is on the understanding of syntax and basic words/synonyms.  It's something of an early AI, and very limited by memory when not by care.  I always enjoyed parser, though, that ability to look at or try anything.  I remember reading the KQ Companion and how the skull in KQ3 was a rudimentary computer.  Goofy?  Sure.  As a kid, I recall wondering why I didn't look at that thing closer.  Parser doesn't widen the world, really; PnC can do all the same, but it always seemed to me when I was younger that the world was limitless.  You could type ANYTHING and maybe get a response.  I enjoyed PnC as well, but was initially disappointed when Sierra went the PnC route.  Of course, that wasn't the biggest issue with their first game in that direction, though many of them weren't initially introduced by the change, either:

Dead Ends - These kind of suck.  When I was in my single digits or an early teen, it was fine.  All the time in the world.  As an older dude, dead ends kinda suck.  It's tough to come up with a balance that avoids it, particularly in the older memory limitations.  But I get it; I can't imagine an adult or most kids today saying, "Sure, my bad, I'll go back and replay 6 hours because maybe I missed something then."  Didn't mind it then.  Don't have time for it now.

Deaths - Maybe a touchy topic or not.  I don't think deaths are awful in and of themselves, but sudden death is frustrating.  Again, as a kid, I learned to bounce when the random wolf appeared, but sometimes death makes sense in the context.  GK1 did it pretty well, I feel.  I think there are two kinds of adventure game deaths. and both can be avoided by saving and restoring, but there's no fun in entering a new screen and dying because fuck you, that's why.  It's a puzzle game, not a shitty luck game.

FMV - Obsolete as it was now, anyway.  GK2, which I enjoyed as a still young teenager, isn't generally placed on the same level as GK1 for I think obvious reasons.  Same could be said for early 3D games, I guess.  I'm not a graphics guy, necessarily, but there are certainly differences, and if the technology is negatively impacting the game portion of the... game, then there's probably an issue.

Bad/Impossible Puzzles - Ifnkovhgroghprm and Cat Mustache are obvious and explored to death.  This is one I feel like I may be trying to balance still.  I'm not sure if the puzzles in Sect are all fair or if there's a bunch of easy ones and hard ones.  I can think of one puzzle (as a backup to avoid a dead-end) that probably needs more clarification/hinting, and that's one way around this kind of puzzle.  Hints within the text or visuals can probably help bang this one out almost universally, as long as the puzzles aren't completely lacking in logic.  Don't want to make it too easy, but don't want a game full of picking up hammers and using them on nails, either.  Random, ambiguous letters in unrelated houses obviously don't work to improve it.  It needs to make sense.  Bad puzzles are a killer seeing as that's the point, right?

Basic Storytelling - Just for the sake of completeness, have an interesting story or an interesting game, like in any other medium.  If your game is some dude trying to go to White Castle or finish their term paper, the game itself better be interesting.  I shit every day; not gonna make a game around it unless Toilet Paper Quest comes with a pretty epic tale.

Surface exploration; definitely interested to hear any other opinions, though?  I feel like we all want to create entire worlds that (or recreate variations of this world in a way which) keeps things interesting and triggers a desire to explore.  What's prevented that in some otherwise stellar games?

BONUS!  Not enough information - Not as big, but if there's something on the screen that can't be deciphered visually, mention it in the general look or at least make it explorable with the right word.  Sometimes the screen just has a bunch of shit on it, and it's all garbage.  That's fine; just catch it with something.  It's perfectly fine to have garbage on the screen, but give it a LOOK response or something.  It sucks to look at that thing which is obviously a ***** and get a generic "don't know what you're talking about" message, particularly if the game's well aware of the word used.

It's tough and imperfect to create an entire world, which I think is part of the thought behind these games, and we want to make them interactive without being frustrating.  A tall order, probably.  Further thoughts into what just sucks sometimes about adventure games?
This time you can build an installer yourself with my NSIS Publisher plugin for Companion 3. When you are finished with the new version, that is.
Cool. I downloaded the plug-in from the wiki. Thanks for the help with this!
This time you can build an installer yourself with my NSIS Publisher plugin for Companion 3. When you are finished with the new version, that is.
Thanks guys! It's so much better when fresh eyes are on it.
I'd be game for a playtest and feedback, too, if you'd like.
Yes, send it my way please.
Would anyone like to playtest and give me feedback?

No pressure  ;)
SCI Development Tools / Re: Decompilation Archive
« Last post by Collector on December 03, 2019, 09:05:59 PM »
Sorry to Resurrect an old thread, but I'm working on another patch. I'm trying to make this game better and better to prepare for bigger things (Betrayed Alliance Book2 in particular).
Here's the current list. I plan on recording a Let's Play of the game to find more bugs/other things needing fixing:
•   Should be an option to turn off music
•   Add difficulty settings: Easy and Hard
o   Hard includes more intricate parser commands
o   Easy includes ability to skip some puzzles (slide block puzzle)
•   Draw new dead thumbnails
o   Ogre killing you
o   Ghost killing you
o   Bugs eating you
o   sarcophagus
•   If teleport to WELL room from WELL room, Ego disappears.
•   If teleport to well rom from adjacent room, not teleport animation (goes for graveyard as well)
•   If top waterspring active in GHOST puzzle, game freezes upon leaving room
•   Crystal ball cannot be interacted with
•   Wizard Room – Wizard’s windows not colored
•   Cliff w/vines. Click on graveyard (word “landscape” repeated twice)
•   “Use marble” should work to get boulder down
•   “Pry open slab (with shovel)” should work in mausoleum
•   Block puzzle (“There seems to be a missing piece”) text should be lowered
•   “Ask about secret” doesn’t work for Sammy
•   Add animation of picking up marbles at meat seller’s house
•   “Look” in Attic doesn’t mention anything about bookshelf
•   “Take Quiz” = “not close enough” – no need to walk to quiz.
•   “Take Kite” = walk to kite and take it, not “Ur not close enough.”
•   “Search body” of dead man in face cave is too verbose. Break it up
•   “Search body” for skeleton doesn’t work
•   Directions for blow dart unclear
•   No message after hitting water button leaves things unclear
•   Allow shooting dart at flies – animation of them dodging?
•   After shooting water to get rid of flies, perhaps a message?
•   Autosave before going into the mausoleum pit.
•   Pry open sarcophagus doesn’t work
•   “Use crystal ball” doesn’t have a response
•   No Pick-up animation in Magic room (heap issue?)
•   “go in hole/cave” doesn’t work at pond area
•    “It’s definitely a rock” message strangely off center [hermit outside], same with tree
•   Cliff area, can’t read sign far away is stupid
•   Talking to soldier who patrols the bridge should be easier (you shouldn’t have to be so close)
•   “Look at pot” should include bend over animation (heap issue?)
•   “Go in mouth/cave” should work. “Crawl in” should work
•   No pick up animation in cavern for marble. No mention of what marble obtained.
•   Skeleton should no block ego
•   “Use dart gun” and “blow dart gun” yields no response (which room?)
•    “take paper” doesn’t read paper in sarcophagus cave
•   “look at ground” doesn’t mention bar
•   Turner on safe should have hint that you can click it
•    “item region” doesn’t seem to work on bridge with guard
•   Scientist’s house…door doesn’t appear as a door
•   Door puzzle – have a wrong solution Print when all pieces are down
•   Eat pork/chicken gives no hint
•   Death image against Ogre is wrong
•   Bugs eat even after you hit button?
•   “activate trap” should work for arrow trap
o   Activating trap says “you’re not close enough” – this is dumb
•   “You may pass” phrase with goggles doesn’t work when lever picture is active
•   Stairwell – walking after defeating armored can be altered by user input – problem
•   Saving in the underground is broken (seems to work ok for me)
•   Puzzle points in character stats not equal what’s on menu bar

•   Librarian could give hints on where to find missing books
•   “Fish” or “go fishing” yield no response
o   Music from Leah’s area not turning off when at pond area
•   “Ask about woman” to Leah yields useless response
•   Front of Castle – some sort of message that it is not the preferred entrance
•   Ran out of heap in Sarah’s secret sanctuary
•   No hint to ask Bobby about hair (perhaps a list of missing books is posted)
•   After digging up ring – there should be a pick-up animation (and a hole left over?)
•   No reasonable hint that Bobby has book about hair
•   Cave of whispers ghost pathfinding is broken after latest fix / also doesn’t kill you
•   Additional room to add suspense would be good
•   Hermit home – right click look on characters just tells you names
•   Face cave does not look menacing…bright colors, nothing foreboding about it.
•   Cavern of madness, no water waves
•   Scientist room
o   Explanation of Goggles seems weird “anything from anywhere”
o   After getting Goggles, give some hint what player should do next
•   No outside door on Dock house
•   After giving letter to Deborah, maybe she tries to sell you food
•   Add some kind of clue to let player know to move table over plate on ground
Yellows currently fixed

SCI Development Tools / Re: Decompilation Archive
« Last post by EricOakford on December 03, 2019, 12:32:39 PM »
Game and interpreter versions?

Ah, yes, I forgot to mention that.

LSL3 is version 1.021, interpreter 0.000.572, and SQ3 is version 1.018, interpreter 0.000.685. These are the versions used in compilations and digital distribution.

LSL2 Amiga is version 1.003, interpreter x.yyy.zzz.
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