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Nanako
Nanako
Posts: 526

19 days ago
A thread for many and various sorts of feedback about the new albion content. Locations, characters, music, mechanics, visuals, whatever. Ill use this thread to deposit various thoughts, hopefully others will too.

The current thing that comes to mind, is that we currently have a notable lack of portraits. There seems to be very few pictures of characters - and their faces most notably, leaving a lot to the imagination. The Mellifluous President of the Royal Society is somewhat less relateable than the Amenable Host of Magdalenes, simply due to the lack of any picture of him. Seeing what people look like is rather important i'd say.

Many more posts to come, ill be spamming this thread with my thoughts. I'm thinking it'd be better to contain it to one thread than to spill out and flood the whole forum

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Sunless Skies needs engine and speed control mechanics. Have a look at my design proposal for implementing it

http://community.failbettergames.com/topic25687-a-design-for-engines.aspx
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Nanako
Nanako
Posts: 526

19 days ago
I've found a lot of earth over in the east end of albion.
https://i.imgur.com/iKing9d.png

An upclose look: https://i.imgur.com/g4Utr4w.jpg

This is a VAST area of hundreds of islands made of earth. Soil, dirt. The sort of thing you'd grow crops in. They're fragmenting and blowing around on the wind. But clearly there's manned facilities here. The question is, what are they for? No crops are apparently being grown here, its really unclear what those facilities are doing.

Are they mining the soil to be shipped elsewhere for agriculture? Are these islands to be used as future grave plots for the serene mausoleum? We could really do with some floaty text to explain the purpose of the manned installations - and the empire's interest in these odd islands.

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Sunless Skies needs engine and speed control mechanics. Have a look at my design proposal for implementing it

http://community.failbettergames.com/topic25687-a-design-for-engines.aspx
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Nanako
Nanako
Posts: 526

19 days ago
The clockwork sun is amazing, especially all the frozen buildings facing it, there's a clear implication there, of what i'm not certain yet, but it's a striking visual.

The sun itself is a beauty to behold, though i fear it spins too quickly to take in the details, i made another thread about that
http://community.failbettergames.com/topic25959-the-clockwork-sun-is-too-fast.aspx

I have noticed one oddity so far. Azimuth. There's a storylet about a building by that name, sundial shaped. but i can't visually see any such thing in the region around it. Which is most confusing. Perhaps you guys just didn't make graphics for it? But it is a bit odd for port storylets to talk about things that we can't actually see there.
At least, it's odd for this game, perhaps i've been spoiled by the high degree of visual representation so far. Add in graphics for azimuth maybe?

The sun shattered dome is odd. I of course understand the desire to have dungeons to explore, but it feels a bit contrived. A hall full of priceless relics? Why does it contain such relics, why hasn't anyone just wandered over and taken them? With traitor's Wood for example (the only other example i can think of, of a dungeon in sunless skies) it's obvious why it hasn't been explored, that place is unspeakably vast, you could hide whole cities in there

The dome in question though is just a building, you can circle around the whole thing in under a minute, it can't take that long to search it. It feels contrived and artificial as a dungeon. Perhaps make it a lot bigger, and harder to access somehow to justify the lack of prior exploration

This whole region has a worlds' fair feel about it. But also abandoned and forgotten. Like that simpsons episode about a worlds fair that nobody cared about. Not sure if that's the intention, but it's a perspective i don't really agree with. I'm quite fond of - at least the image of - Victoria's Great Exhibition https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Great_Exhibition
With it's glass halls full of invention and wonder, dragging civilisation into a new era, its clearly an inspiration, shalimar is the big clue :P The whole area around the clockwork sun feels inspired by that, but also seems like a mockery of it, rather than a homage to it. Portraying everything as failed, forgotten and depressing.

I'm a little miffed that there's no option to tell the sequencer - and his well intentioned package - to bugger off. As the MP for Brabazon workworld, i'm certainly not going to deliver mind-controlling stellar propaganda to my constituents, and i resent that i'm forced to carry this crate and to purposefully ignore the option to deliver it

Also one very small issue to end this post on, why does everything insist on using "Sun" and not "Star" ? I feel like "Clockwork Star" has a nicer ring to it, and would perhaps be more technically correct. I suspect there's a lore or thematic reason behind this, and that it's a deliberate choice, but i'm missing something
edited by Nanako on 4/4/2018
edited by Nanako on 4/4/2018
edited by Nanako on 4/4/2018

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Sunless Skies needs engine and speed control mechanics. Have a look at my design proposal for implementing it

http://community.failbettergames.com/topic25687-a-design-for-engines.aspx
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Nanako
Nanako
Posts: 526

19 days ago
The dock in london is a little odd. St Dominics Station is a vast covered glass and metal edifice, exactly what you'd expect from a british train station. Except that our docking port is just awkwardly attached to the outside of it, rather than under that dome. Why?

It would be far better imo, to allow us to dock inside the massive dome. Let us fly in there, and have the roof turn mostly-transparent when we're under it, so we can see our way to the docking port. So we could have a view of platforms and other trains all around

The view we get of london from our docking location isn't so great https://i.imgur.com/QSRCHQu.jpg

Most of the screen is taken up by the aforementioned glass roof, and most of the remainder by some...tracks? that head off to the north but don't really go anywhere. London is a pretty impressive city, but we don't see much of it from this location, i think things should be rearranged to get more density and visual variety around the docking location

Also i feel that london itself is a bit sparse in general.https://i.imgur.com/FLD0Jw2.jpg
It only seems to go 1-2 parallax layers down, and imo could do with more depth. Add more background layers and let it spiral down farther into the fog, too much of the screen around london is just plain fog, and it seems less dense than some other locations, despite ostensibly being the largest city in the known high wilderness
it looks a fair bit less interesting than the factories, which i'll cover in the next post
edited by Nanako on 4/4/2018

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Sunless Skies needs engine and speed control mechanics. Have a look at my design proposal for implementing it

http://community.failbettergames.com/topic25687-a-design-for-engines.aspx
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Nanako
Nanako
Posts: 526

19 days ago
The factories are imo, the biggest triumph of albion - granted i've not seen all of it yet.

https://i.imgur.com/tGR5BWt.jpg

They offer a staggering degree of visual depth and complexity, as a city spirals down into the distance. This reminds me very much of Midgar, from Final Fantasy 7, or Coruscant, of Star Wars fame. In both cases, an unspeakably vast - seemingly infinite cityscape, where individuals are naught but cogs in a vast machine. To put it into words, it is horrifyingly beautiful

I'd like to see this kind of depth applied to london more too. Maybe put more poor houses, slums and rookeries, visible in the background layers, less of the fog

A few small concerns come to mind:
The location of the transit relay in albion, feels kind of arbitrary: https://i.imgur.com/cuKfCXP.jpg
its sort of just, ontop of a vast factory complex, hard to pick out from the surroundings. I'd have thought something like this would be in its own area with a lot of free space around it. Especially given that the same relay is used for First Class transport, and i feel like imperial VIPs wouldn't want to fly over factories and smokestacks on their way to do her majesty's bidding. Their trains would get rather dirty from the soot

What and where exactly is the brabazon workworld?
My map looks like this: https://i.imgur.com/yDdM8Am.png
Ingame storylets describe The Bit Between as being between brabazon and little nice, which would mean brabazon is that small factory/island on the south of little nice.
But it is kind of small, relatively speaking. its a factory, hardly a world of any sort. And why is it labelled Nursery 12 ?
The thing that seems far more like a "world" is that vast factory complex to the north. Does that thing not even get a name ? I'm a little confused. Perhaps it would be good to move the "The Brabazon Workworld" label to be properly ontop of whichever structure it is referring to.

The whole workworld concept in general is pretty nice though, there's an obvious reference to victorian workhouses, a certain oliver twist feel to the theme. I like it

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Sunless Skies needs engine and speed control mechanics. Have a look at my design proposal for implementing it

http://community.failbettergames.com/topic25687-a-design-for-engines.aspx
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Ludovide
Ludovide
Posts: 33

19 days ago
I really like the clockwork sun too, but I feel its speed is fine as it is. I believe that instead of ice, the crystals are actually glass.

I agree that the factories are amazing, and I think your concern about brabazon and the view from london is due to the fact that ports in skies, unlike in seas, are less contained areas and tend to sprawl out.

I have to say that I'm loving the mechanics of time. The fact that time is woven around your ship to make journeys shorter and woven to protect you when you enter the accelerated work world.

I think that Albion, for me, is breathtakingly massive and beautiful, and it just makes me want to dive into a giant lore swimming pool. I think the overall atmosphere is amazing and spot on, and there might be some problems when it came to executing it but I think we ought to take a step back and appreciate just how cool albion turned out.

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Check out my character, they're open to
most social actions and I'm really into roleplaying: http://fallenlondon.storynexus.com/Profile/Ludovide
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Nanako
Nanako
Posts: 526

19 days ago
The office of works at london is great, that foreman has some real character. But i feel like the pool of possible requisitions is far too small, and a little unbalanced.

The one where he requests tea + a vision of heaven is really easy, ive done it five times. Whereas all the others (two others i can recall) are harder and require rarer items. Ive only managed to do one of them once and the other zero times. caged catches and condemned experiments are hard to come by

--
Sunless Skies needs engine and speed control mechanics. Have a look at my design proposal for implementing it

http://community.failbettergames.com/topic25687-a-design-for-engines.aspx
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Nanako
Nanako
Posts: 526

19 days ago
The new Altani Outrider is a nice ship. It's statistically superior to the pellinore/parsival/bedivere, and it is as i envisioned, a new tier of ships. This is a great design decision and i approve. However i do take one aesthetic issue with it:

Size
Altani


Pellinore



The altani is a little longer, but it's of a notably slimmer build, and a significant part of its bulk is just external plating mounted on standoffs. The overall volume of this train is considerably less than the pellinore, which has a clear cargo bay mounted on the front.

And yet, the Altani has a higher base cargo capacity. This does not make sense.

I'm not asking for any redesigns, both of them are pretty fine. All i'd like is for the altani to be scaled up a bit. Increase the scale of it by 10-20%, so that it ends up with more volume than the pellinore and justifies its increased stats. For example, like the Bedivere


The bedivere is a clearly larger engine - than either of them infact. So you guys are clearly no stranger to having ships of different sizes. Please reconsider the relation of size to stats, and scale up the altani at the least

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Sunless Skies needs engine and speed control mechanics. Have a look at my design proposal for implementing it

http://community.failbettergames.com/topic25687-a-design-for-engines.aspx
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Nanako
Nanako
Posts: 526

19 days ago
The Sky-Maddened explorers are fun, the option to read the logs and learn what befell the crew, seems like a good writing hook. Unfortunately there seems to be only one result - for failure at least. Paintings of a stoker as he dies.

It'd be nice to see some more randomly generated variations put in for that. just for flavor you understand, it'd give a tale of terror either way

Perhaps one about how the crew gutted each other in their sleep, or made art out of entrails, or divided the train into micro nations and declared war on each other? I love what you guys did with randomly generated text in Carillon, i'd like to see something similar for this.
edited by Nanako on 4/5/2018

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Sunless Skies needs engine and speed control mechanics. Have a look at my design proposal for implementing it

http://community.failbettergames.com/topic25687-a-design-for-engines.aspx
0 link
Nanako
Nanako
Posts: 526

19 days ago
A lot of places are somewhat lacking in art. That's understandable of course, and hopefully it's just a temporary situation. There are a great many locations for which some visuals would help, for example:



This little area of Perdurance has sixty nine words of description, devoted to setting the scene of this ballroom, Alongside this placeholder image of a train at a station
It is, quite lovely I imagine. But sometimes imagining is hard work, and as they say, a picture is worth a thousand words. having a graphical depiction of this ballroom would do a lot to set the scene, and make perdurance a more memorable place.
This is one such example, but there are many places, where elaborate descriptions are used instead of art, where an image might be more beneficial.

In fact, in a great many of these cases, It would be vastly helpful to simply have a screenshot of the map location. You can drive over to the Evening Ballroom and see what it looks like from above and outside. Putting in a picture of that here would do wonders for helping to visualise, and it'd be much cheaper than having a painting made of the scene, which is understandably laborious




Someone clearly went to a lot of trouble painting this intricate building. It is wonderful and beautiful, more than good enough to stand alongside the description in the storylet above.
Imagine the two of them paired together - it's a cheap and instant improvement to the atmosphere, much more relateable than the placeholder train

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Sunless Skies needs engine and speed control mechanics. Have a look at my design proposal for implementing it

http://community.failbettergames.com/topic25687-a-design-for-engines.aspx
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Nanako
Nanako
Posts: 526

16 days ago
Recieving obscure items from discoveries without any accompanying text is rather jarring.
Some writing for every discovery would be nice, but i can understand not needing it when i get fuel from a floating crate. The crate contained fuel, i get it.

It's a bit wierder when i investigate an abandoned dwelling and recieve a condemned experiment. No explanation, what horrors did i witness in there? Or when i examine a floating statue and get a vision of heaven. What's so great about it, does it remind me of a fallen city?
Today i found one of those statues and recieved a sky story. What story? Am i one day going to sit down infront of the fire with my grandchildren and recount

"Did i ever tell you about the time when grandma steered her ship up to a floating rock and pressed R?"

If its not fuel or supplies or gold, it needs some explanation text. and even for those text would be nice
edited by Nanako on 4/8/2018

--
Sunless Skies needs engine and speed control mechanics. Have a look at my design proposal for implementing it

http://community.failbettergames.com/topic25687-a-design-for-engines.aspx
+1 link
Lord Alexander Alderman
Lord Alexander Alderman
Posts: 32

15 days ago
Why would this even have to be a complaint, FB is well known for its story telling ability. It's the whole reason why we love it and it still exists. Why would it possibly be lacking in texts for discoveries and the ships of madmen as mentioned earlier, its baffling. We can only hope that this and the reused art will be filled in over time. As for the new cargo ship, the thing is that it has detailed artwork, and you can't just ''blow it up'' and make it larger, they would have to make another version of the art, even if it is very similar.
edited by Lord Alexander Alderman on 4/8/2018
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