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EXPERIMENTAL CONTENT: A Flash Lay Messages in this topic - RSS

Lady Sapho Byron
Lady Sapho Byron
Posts: 725

12/17/2015
I just played though the Avid Auditor. How delightful! I thought the mechanics worked well (there are enough "things" to acquire and shed--informants and obstacles, for example--that it doesn't feel -too- grindy), it was nice to see some moderate challenges at high stats, and the text was fun. And I have a very unhealthy interest in forbidden material; so that part was perfect!!

I wasn't bothered by having to hit 100 progress, but I would have liked to know going in that it would take that long! Or at least have a hint. I would also recommend allowing players to back out part way through, even if it means the loss of all progress (or is that an option and I just missed it somehow?).

  • edited by Lady Sapho Byron on 12/17/2015


  • P. S. The variety of cards and the variety of actions on the cards is also a bonus. For long grinds like this variety is essential.
    edited by Lady Sapho Byron on 12/17/2015

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  • +2 link
    CALLNXW
    CALLNXW
    Posts: 116

    12/17/2015
    My biggest problem with the new content is that it's impossible to end at will. Unlike heists, card rarity doesn't change after hitting the goal, and so I'm stuck at 130 progress with no end in sight.

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    +1 link
    NiteBrite
    NiteBrite
    Posts: 1014

    12/17/2015
    CALLNXW wrote:
    My biggest problem with the new content is that it's impossible to end at will. Unlike heists, card rarity doesn't change after hitting the goal, and so I'm stuck at 130 progress with no end in sight.

    [spoiler][/spoiler]

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    +4 link
    Pyrodinium
    Pyrodinium
    Posts: 639

    12/17/2015
    NiteBrite wrote:
    CALLNXW wrote:
    My biggest problem with the new content is that it's impossible to end at will. Unlike heists, card rarity doesn't change after hitting the goal, and so I'm stuck at 130 progress with no end in sight.

    [spoiler][/spoiler]



    Mr. Veil's Wild Heist - The Progress never ends!

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    +6 link
    CALLNXW
    CALLNXW
    Posts: 116

    12/17/2015
    Okay I finally unclogged myself at 160 progress.
    Pretty sure the rewards weren't worth it

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    +1 link
    dov
    dov
    Posts: 2537

    12/17/2015
    After some time to think more on this:

    Absolutely needs one of the following refinements:
    • Either make it much shorter (though this won't give all the different mechanics time to play out)
    • Or, make it like Expeditions - i.e. able to leave at any time and resume the quest later from the same spot.


    Regardless of which of the above is chosen, the following are needed:
    • Clear instructions at the beginning at to what is the goal.
    • A way to quit at any time, with the loss of all progress. Possibly with some penalty (Suspicion increase?).
    • A way to expedite the end condition once the goal Progress level is reached (e.g. by making the exit immediately available; by making the end card extremely high frequency once conditions are met, etc.). Must not reach a point as reported by CALLNXW of having to wait until Progress 160 before finding the resolution to the quest.


    -----
    edited by dov on 12/17/2015

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    +5 link
    Mordaine Barimen
    Mordaine Barimen
    Posts: 670

    12/17/2015
    There is almost no explanation of what is going on your first time through and how much Progress you'll need to gather. Having to wait on a lucky draw to end things is a terrible mechanic and should not be used, doubly so when you cannot walk away prematurely.

    The Must Autofires are really irritating. Nondiscardables or something similar would be far preferable for me. I guess from others' comments that there was a similar mechanic in Flint, but that expedition was such...an interesting experience...that I never encountered them in there. Still, not a fan in the slightest of this setup.

    For Stone's sake, at least let people know how much progress they will need.

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    0 link
    lady ciel
    lady ciel
    Posts: 2545

    12/17/2015
    I am playing this on an alt at the moment, I'm finding it difficult to get progress. Things that raise scandal or suspicion or Up your sleeve seem quite common though. I suppose that is part of the problem with having a lot of possible cards. The autofire obstacles are also quite annoying, especially as I don't seem to be getting much progress. Maybe the RNG just doesn't like me on this one.

    I don't know if it has been changed but it definitely said at the beginning that 100 progress was needed to complete this.

    I have also seen a number of different cards that would let me complete this if I had enough progress - but they seem to just give up your sleeve.

    Out of actions for now and I went in with over 30 actions upset

    --
    ciel

    Sorry RL means I am not a very active player at the moment. No social actions unless you are prepared to wait and definitely no sparring or other mult-action things.

    No Calling Cards or boxed cats please. Will take dupes on the affluent photographers. Other social invitations welcome. Parabolan Kittens usually available, send me an in-game social action saying you want one and I will get one to you as soon as possible.

    storynexus name - reveurciel
    +2 link
    lady ciel
    lady ciel
    Posts: 2545

    12/17/2015
    Just thought that I would add that at the moment I ran out of actions I have the card that will complete this (the first card I drew!) and another two that will give up your sleeve. At least one of them will reduce scandal and suspicion. A progress card would be nice though smile

    --
    ciel

    Sorry RL means I am not a very active player at the moment. No social actions unless you are prepared to wait and definitely no sparring or other mult-action things.

    No Calling Cards or boxed cats please. Will take dupes on the affluent photographers. Other social invitations welcome. Parabolan Kittens usually available, send me an in-game social action saying you want one and I will get one to you as soon as possible.

    storynexus name - reveurciel
    0 link
    colinsapherson
    colinsapherson
    Posts: 190

    12/17/2015
    Estelle Knoht wrote:
    First thought:

    I must've logged in Below by accident.

    Second thought:

    Oh wait, Chris Gardiner posted the news.


    I agree that the Flash Lays have the Mark of Gardiner on them, but to me they feel less like Below and more like hunting in The Last Court. None of which is a bad thing – I feel that Chris has made the most interesting use of StoryNexus/Fallen London mechanics of anyone, and I see this as a good alternative to repetitive grinds.

    I would certainly go for something like this, with high reward value and variety, over a loop of the same five action types again and again and again. I want Cider some day, but I don’t want to be brain dead when I get there. So this is the kind of content for me.

    The 125 Shadowy Lay is long, possibly too long, but we do have a shorter alternative option and after the first time players will know what they’re getting themselves into. As said by others, lot of the issues people have might disappear if you can access other parts of the game more readily. I don’t see a reason why you wouldn’t be able to go to the Bazaar while building up a relationship with your Mark. Similarly, it would seem reasonable to be able to do other social actions while your Flash Lay is underway. The ability to leave early (for a cost) is a good one, though I realise that the impact it has on drawing opportunity cards may be unbalancing (when returning to London from a place with no draw limit, your opportunity deck is refilled to 10).

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    +1 link
    The Sorrowful Heiress
    The Sorrowful Heiress
    Posts: 3

    12/17/2015
    I'll echo what the others have said.
    1) It could be shorter.
    2) An 'instructions' storylet would help a lot.
    3) Turning the opportunity card to complete the Flash Lay into a regular card so you don't have to depend on luck to have it show up might be nice.
    0 link
    Estelle Knoht
    Estelle Knoht
    Posts: 1751

    12/17/2015
    Just blew though both Sprifer and Auditor - I feel like it is either too short (for people to play with Obstacles and Openings) or too long (like other said).

    I'd like to have more options to spend Up the Sleeves, and perhaps use your own wealth/skill to deal with Obstacles ala trading Duchess for Cat during Heists.

    --
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    0 link
    CALLNXW
    CALLNXW
    Posts: 116

    12/17/2015
    Oh, and one more thing. You can draw two auto-must-fire card at once, which cause them to queue up and clog your actions. Except you can't know about it on the first card, because you it fires before it visibly appears in the deck

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    0 link
    metasynthie
    metasynthie
    Posts: 645

    12/17/2015
    I like the Must cards in principle, but they have bad UX design -- the player doesn't know what's happening and as CALLNXW points out you could draw several at once, you could draw them while you're out of actions, etc.

    Must cards would work better if they simply disabled other cards when drawn -- not simply undiscardable (since all cards in Flash Lay are) but must-be-clicked, the other cards greyed out or covered up by a layer that's not clickable. They ought to be "you must click" as opposed to be "we clicked this for you when you weren't looking!" I think Jakob Nielsen is moaning in terror somewhere.

    On a similar note my impression is that alternate-deck experiences have to be of a certain minimum length in order to make it slightly hard to refill your main deck. This seems awkward to balance around... Since the player's Fifth City hand is now remembered would it really be that difficult to remember # of cards in deck?

    I tend to agree that the ending card ought to have a higher probabilty (maybe just Frequent if not Abundant?) and a 100-progress draw requirement, since there's the other card with the redirect and progress option that you can draw and strategically keep in your hand; they feel a bit redundant.
    edited by metasynthie on 12/17/2015

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    +3 link
    Ewan C.
    Ewan C.
    Posts: 675

    12/17/2015
    Although I didn't finish the Flash Lay in one sitting, it has vanished for me now - anyone else experiencing this? One an alt that did not start, it also does not appear..?
    0 link
    Chris Gardiner
    Chris Gardiner
    Administrator
    Posts: 535

    12/17/2015
    Hi all! Thanks for the responses - keep them coming!


    We're going to collect more feedback before making any major changes, but a couple of responses to points raised:
    • I've added a note to the current Flash Lays specifying you need 100 Progress to complete them. Not all future Flash Lays may require the same amount.
    • I chose not to add an instructional storylet, because I wanted to see how well people got to grips with the mechanics without one (pretty well, it turns out!). We may add one (depending on feedback), but this way, we get to see which elements are most unclear.
    • The Flash Lay's length, the frequency of Opening cards, and the possibility of an early escape hatch are all things we'll be considering.
    • The auto-firing Obstacle cards may indeed have my fingerprints on them, but this content is one of the most collaborative pieces of Fallen London content we've done. Alexis did the bulk of the design, with some contributions from Adam and I. The writing was done by Emily Short, Cash, Olivia and myself. I think the different voices in the prose add to the sense of variety in the content.

    Thanks folks!
    +8 link
    Ewan C.
    Ewan C.
    Posts: 675

    12/17/2015
    Ewan C. wrote:
    Although I didn't finish the Flash Lay in one sitting, it has vanished for me now - anyone else experiencing this? One an alt that did not start, it also does not appear..?


    And the act of noting this appears to have reversed it smile. [I suspect that my main char, who does not see the option, must have lost one of the two prerequisites in the recent re-vamping of progress along story lines; I shall have to go work out which and how to restore it, I suppose.]
    0 link
    RandomWalker
    RandomWalker
    Posts: 948

    12/17/2015
    Well, I've played through seven or eight tries with different alts and at both difficulty levels.

    Short answer for me: it's a nice mechanic and can be fun, but the EPA is well below the level necessary to make it worthwhile to visit more than twice. Each session takes me between 29 and 35 odd actions, depending on luck, and the reward just makes that below a useful value, particularly when factoring in clearing up menaces afterwards.

    There's a curious bug, which I'm sure will be squashed post-haste, where the lay refreshes your deck when it's done. So if you clear your deck and do the lay, the deck will be replenished when you're done, even if you've only taken a few real-time minutes. I'll report it as a bug after work.

    The duration doesn't bother me that much, although locking out the bazaar seems silly. The high number of solid menace cards is annoying - not just the auto-fires, but the card that gives measly progress or hurts your quirks, and the cards that just give measly progress for a high-difficulty challenge. In fact the auto-fires are desirable, once you have enough up your sleeve.

    Minor observation, but the reward card for converting the obstacle into an opportunity is rare, seems to self-destruct after one use, and just clogs the deck when you're aiming for completion. It takes so long to get enough 'up your sleeve' to do the conversion that the card is practically useless when it shows - you're better off spending your actions elsewhere.

    Overall, I love the concept of the long con. The game of deception and so on. I like a lot about the execution. It's just a bit frustrating, particularly towards the end, and from a grinding perspective, not worth the hassle of constantly changing outfits.
    +1 link
    lady ciel
    lady ciel
    Posts: 2545

    12/17/2015
    When I play this again I will not go in with any scandal or suspicion and probably with full candles. It looks like it might be fun ... especially if the RNG gives good cards.

    I didn't encounter many of the things that are mentioned in the section which clears them all so I definitely do look forward to going in again to see what might turn up.

    --
    ciel

    Sorry RL means I am not a very active player at the moment. No social actions unless you are prepared to wait and definitely no sparring or other mult-action things.

    No Calling Cards or boxed cats please. Will take dupes on the affluent photographers. Other social invitations welcome. Parabolan Kittens usually available, send me an in-game social action saying you want one and I will get one to you as soon as possible.

    storynexus name - reveurciel
    0 link
    metasynthie
    metasynthie
    Posts: 645

    12/17/2015
    Is it just me, or are the Openings the most arduous qualities to get in this system, and yet quite ineffectual? 4 up your sleeve can get you 25 progress, but going up to 8 up your sleeve can put an Opening card in your deck... But that card has options that either gain you more Up Your Sleeve, or 3 (!) progress at the cost of the opening, or 1 progress. Given hiw many cards give you 3 or 7 progress for a skill check (which acquiring and using the Opening cards also require!) I'm not sure why Openings would ever be a good idea to pursue. They're dependent on drawing a lot more cards (6 at least), pay out worse than many single cards, and are strictly dominated by the "change an obstacle into progress" option as far as I can tell.

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