[ANN] Steam Brigade released

Discussion in 'Feedback Requests' started by ryan thom, Feb 28, 2006.

  1. ryan thom

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    Hello all. First off, I'd just like to say thanks to everyone here - you all make this place a great resource for indies. Much heartache and tears have been saved because you let others benefit from your experience.

    Secondly, I'd like to announce that our company, Pedestrian Entertainment, is releasing our first product: "Steam Brigade". Originally intended to be a four month project, we ended up spending a year on it. We just couldn't put it down until it was done, and luckily we were able to keep ourselves fed and sheltered until it was. Anyway, we're pretty happy with the result, and I wanted to present it here for some peer review.

    I'd love to hear any feedback or comments you may have. I'm specifically concerned about the difficulty level of the game, how easy or difficult it is to learn, and whether or not the demo offers enough to compel someone to buy it.

    Download here

    Some screenshots:
    main menu
    morning
    afternoon
    evening
    night
    story poem
    back to the drawing board

    System requirements:
    -PC with Windows 2000 or Windows XP (98 and ME untested)
    -1Ghz or faster processor
    -OpenGL compatible video card with 32mB video ram or greater
    -65mB free hard disk space

    Thanks in advance for your input! :)
     
    #1 ryan thom, Feb 28, 2006
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2006
  2. whisperstorm

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    Just tried it out - I has a very Iron Giant vibe to it. Quite fun! Seems very accessible to novice players - I immediately picked up on the fact that you can deploy soldiers by pressing the numbers above them without having to dig around in the help screens at all. Looks to be very addictive :)
     
  3. Arkadesh

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    Screenshots look great, but it just crashes on my machine. It's old 1.6 Pentium IV with poor Geforce4MX card running on Win XP, but it should meet the specs.

    cheers,
    Arkadesh
     
    #3 Arkadesh, Mar 1, 2006
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2006
  4. ryan thom

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    You're right, it should. Hm. Is there any message given when it crashes or does it just not start?
     
  5. ryan thom

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    Also, to wisperstorm: Thanks! And yes, our artist is a huge fan of Iron Giant. How can you not be, really?

    Good to know you found it straight forward - I'm getting a mixed response on that so far. Different strokes for different folks I guess. Any suggestions on the tutorial messages (wording, order) would be helpful too - as developers we tend to assume a lot unfortunately. Anyway thanks for the feedback.
     
  6. Nexic

    Indie Author

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    Hey, I really really like this game. Not sure I would go all the way and buy it, but I definitely played for a fair bit of time and enjoyed myself in the process. It's pretty original :)

    Though there are some points I think could be improved:

    The tutorial section was a bit confusing as I had to click on each thing myself, I didn't really know which section to go for. Maybe you should put them all into one big level, or have the controlling your glider one start automatically? I also think the tutorials are a bit lacking, and don't really explain things very well.

    I found it pretty cumbersome to pick up soldiers and move them places. I'm notsure exaclty how, but I think this needs to be improved somehow. I got to points where I needed to move a man quickly, but ended up spending 20 odd seconds just trying to pick him up. Which was quite frustrating. If that didn't happen then I think I would have enjoyed the game much more.

    The font on the intro screens is quite hard to look at, and as a consquence put me off reading much of the text.
     
  7. Arkadesh

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    Typical error messagebox about instruction at adress xxxx trying to access memory at location 0x00000004 and some other - something like 0xFFFFFFxx
    Do you have some exe that outputs some debug logs? I could run it here.

    cheers,
    Arkadesh
     
  8. ryan thom

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    Arkadesh: I'll see what I can rustle up. I may have a similar card around here somewhere. What version of video drivers are you running? Have you updated recently?

    Nexic: As a sort of stop-gap measure, would it help to number the tutorial levels 1, 2, and 3?

    By "lacking", do you mean not enough information in each message, or not enough messages, or both? We were afraid of annoying the user too much, but maybe it's just not enough info. Also, would it be helpful to explain more about the purpose behind the skills you're learning?

    Yeah, the piloting takes a light touch - most people tend to over-correct or are too heavy on the gas at first. Not sure what to say on this one. I really like the way it flies right now. I've experimented with making the Airship more agile, but that tends to increase the over-correct problem, and making it less agile is somewhat frustrating. Maybe another tutorial message is appropriate, but I'm worried there's already too much to read...

    ...speaking of which, I agree about the font. :)
     
  9. Arkadesh

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    Hardware manager says it's 5.6.7.3 and driver file version is 6.14.10.5673
    I don't think they're the latest ones, I've reinstalled Windows recently, and that's probably what I got from Windows Update. Let me check if downloading latest drivers from nvidia site helps.
    Latest news: new drivers solve the problem.

    cheers,
    Arkadesh
     
    #9 Arkadesh, Mar 1, 2006
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2006
  10. ryan thom

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    That's great news, Akradesh! My homework is to repro the problem here and get a dialog box to come up or something instead of just crashing. Many thanks for finding this!! :D
     
  11. ryan thom

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    I spelled your name incorrectly, Arkadesh. My apologies, but I'm not allowed to edit my posts.
     
  12. Surrealix

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    I love it!

    I agree that's it's a bit of a pain trying to pick up your soldiers. I like the difficulty of everything, it ramps up pretty much exactly how I needed it to. I got through the tutorials ok, but again I'd agree that they could be filled in with a bit more information.

    The sketches for the story and the menus look really cool too. There's a really nice overall feel to the game.
     
  13. sulaiman

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    A very neat concept. The graphics are really nice as is the theme. I had little difficulty in picking up the main gameplay after a few minutes of play. The only real difficulty was the moving things around part.
    Picking up people was really a chore. I think that anything that could ease this would help greatly and also make the game faster and more exciting.

    The AI should be more aggresive in crushing you if they have the advantage. I got into a stalemate which seemed like it would last forever. The tutorial needs a tad more handholding and directions.

    All and all I wonder if it could go into a C&C side-scrolling direction.
     
  14. Ryan Clark

    Indie Author

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    Hi Ryan! Your game looks great. And it's also nice to know that there's another indie gamer named Ryan here in Vancouver :)

    In case you didn't know, we have Vancouver indie meet-ups now and then, if you're interested. We'll probably have another in April, after the IGF's over and things have settled down.

    Anyway, your screens look great... I'm off to boot into Windows to give it a whirl.
     
  15. Ryan Clark

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    Hm, unfortunately I get the following error:

    The STEAMBRIGADE.EXE file is linked to missing export SHELL32.DLL:SHGetFolderPathA

    I'm running Win98, which is probably the cause of this problem. I recall hearing issues with SHELL32.DLL on older machines, though mine isn't THAT old (1.7GHz).
     
  16. Nexic

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    Hmm I'm thinking that this could be fixed without changing the flying speed. For example greater vertical range, and maybe a little more horizontal of the magnet thingy would probably do it
     
  17. electronicStar

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    Screenshots remind me of "steel empires" for the sega megadrive.
    Will check out the demo and give myimpressions later:)
     
  18. ryan thom

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    We experimented with that at one point, but found that often you'd pick up more troops than you wanted, making the ship too heavy. I'd consider lengthening the vertical but thinning the horizontal maybe... gonna think on it. Thanks btw, this is great feedback.
     
  19. ryan thom

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    GAH! There can be only one!! ;)

    Yeah, I'm down with a meet. It'd be great to chew the fat with some local indies.

    Re: Shell32.dll... boo-urns! Any advice? We've got a Win98 machine kicking around here we'll get running again - hopefully won't take long to get it working on that.
     
  20. ryan thom

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    Well, we don't want to make people cry during the demo, so we disabled some AI abilities for the early levels. Just wait till later - it's vicious with a Flack Truck.

    Ok, looks like there's a theme here. I'll get to work on that.
     

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