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Archived Post 03-29-2011 03:23 PM

How Long Does It Take To Cook A Foundry Mission
I've spent the entire day creating my mission and it is far from complete. I spent hours on Foundry while it was only on Tribble. I also plan to create a video for it and a page, as I will do with all missions I create.

I just got wondering, how long does it take to cook a good Foundry mission.

I logged in this morning to find a whole list of missions and here I am still working on my one. I think it will take another day, maybe another 2 depending on many objects I put on the map for decoration etc. Now sure many people would have copied their text from Tribble and had a good idea of how to go about putting their story board together quickly but if you are going all out.

Is there a general number of hours that you'll need to spend on a mission to get five stars?

Obviously there will be the occasional mission that just cracks us up or impresses us with innovation but I think we all know these will be few and far between.

I'm thinking 24 hours. Maybe half that if your taking your storyline from somewhere it already exists but to really make your storyline work with the constraints Foundry has, you need to do a lot of changes to your original plan which seems to take the most time. i.e. I started by asking users to get into a shuttle, bad move. I continued with the idea but cancelled it. This was due to not being able to set interaction with the Select Your Ship console as an objective on Earth Space Dock. I've also just realised by adding Borg maps, the mission is level 41 up, do I now change the last half of my mission and that will take more hours?

Anyone else spent today making a mission and being patience enough to not release it until it is perfect?

Or am I just being a perfectionist :)

Archived Post 03-29-2011 03:34 PM

People will vote is negatively regardless. So don't worry about that.

Cooking time depends on what and how you cook. If you are a microwaver, then you are just going to throw elements together and hope they make enough sense to create a story out of it. You could get a story out in a couple hours.

If you are a crock pot cooker, your story will have a lot of thought into it before you even touch the foundry. And then you are going to spend several minutes per element to make sure the look is just right. You make take a couple days to get a project out.

Myself, I'm more of a restaurant cook. I generally have a good idea of what I want to put together and tend to make up the details as I go. It won't be the best product on the market, but most people will enjoy it and will come back for seconds. My project (listed in my sig) took me about 6 hours and I'm still makeing minor changes to it.

Archived Post 03-29-2011 03:36 PM

I'm a Buffet restaurant cooker.

Archived Post 03-29-2011 03:37 PM

i found a lot of things didnt seem to work on the play through in foundry, so published mine about 15 times :)

things like the initial contact text, final map transitions etc, just didnt seem to want to work for me within the foundry, so i published, became a reviewer and ran through the mission myself, taking notes on spelling mistakes, typo's and areas of confusion and places for improvement.

there's still some effects i cant make work, and some funky stuff that i'm not the only one suffering from by the looks of things (ships you set up to warp in just warp in, rubber-band back, warp in, rubber-band back over and over again.. almost got that worked out now!)

there are a LARGE amount of missions up already that are noted to be works in progress by their authors, so i would honestly suggest getting it as close as you think you can and letting it out, gathering feedback and tweaking till you're happy.

as an occasional writer, the problem with self-editing is always the chance that you'll never be 100% happy with it, and all the work you've put in so far never sees the light of day, so take that chance :)

I'd say 24 hours is a fair amount of time, i've stopped tweaking mine for now, waiting for another round of feedback. i published after 6 hours, and have tweaked (and slept.. and all that) over the next 18.

Archived Post 03-29-2011 03:38 PM

I've only seen a couple well written ones so far, not counting a few that were meticulously copy/pasted over from Tribble. Honestly, a lot of the ones near hte top of the ratings right now are there more because they pose an interesting challenge than because they're particularly good. Klingon Incursion comes to mind - the only really remarkable part of the mission is that the enemies are set up in a way that poses a legitimate challenge without getting grindy like turning the difficulty up to elite can.

Unless you are on elite. Then it's just a good way to run out of major and critical components.

Don't feel like you're getting beaten to market by the big mission list that's up now, if your mission is as good as the time you put into it justifies, it'll be a cut above 80% of it.

Archived Post 03-29-2011 03:42 PM


Originally Posted by Staran (Post 3462120)
I'm a Buffet restaurant cooker.

You throw eveything out there and hope people find something they like?

Archived Post 03-29-2011 03:47 PM


Originally Posted by Commadore_Bob
You throw eveything out there and hope people find something they like?

and when they get a stomach flu, they forget where they ate that night so I won't get sued

Archived Post 03-29-2011 03:53 PM


Originally Posted by Staran (Post 3462135)
and when they get a stomach flu, they forget where they ate that night so I won't get sued

ROFL. That's funny.

Archived Post 03-29-2011 05:55 PM


I think the overall word is that a good mission takes a long long time especially if you are maintaining it. When you consider future tweeks or even extending a mission, days worth of hours could go into a good one.

I also find myself spending a lot of time trying to get a few things working that just don't want work at all.

1. I've found a Borg console you cannot apply interaction objective too, but it appears level with ground
2. Found another borg console you can apply objective too but it spawns out of site, that is time consuming.

We'll get there.

Would be nice to see a history of revisions rather than just latest version. Use the captain log system to create update notes. This would be appreciated for the very best missions.

Archived Post 03-29-2011 07:56 PM

It depends on your familiarity with the toolset. I tossed revisions to my older missions up yesterday (completely re-writing large portions of text to take advantage of branching dialogue and making it more interactive).

Here are my big Foundry secrets:
1) Walk before you run. Don't start work on a 10 part megaseries before you've released a mission. Don't release a mission until you've gotten the general hang of the toolset (i.e. no "test" missions).

2) Use the Highlight text tool. I know many players just skip mission essential text and rely on that objective tracker for all their data. They don't read text. Help make it easier on them by highlighting text.

3) Try to make the new seem familiar; the ordinary seem new. Whether it's the writing or environment design, you need to have a feel for how your mission will stand out from the pack. Making strange new worlds feel lived in (like the Romulan mining colony) or familiar things seem brand new (like reskinning targ to spit acid that another mob uses).

4) Play other Foundry missions. Learning to use the tools from day one was rough. We didn't even have a tutorial when closed beta started (Zero gave it to us later). That's part of the reason some of the users went on to make video tutorials.. Learn, play, and then you'll know what to parameters and constraints you have.

5) Don't feel down that you can't do your story exactly how you wrote. The Foundry tools are growing and, with ingenuity, you can find workarounds that can surprise and astonish even the developers. :)

6) Accept Criticism. People don't have to play your mission. They might have their one night off of work and thought yours looked cool. Something about your mission attracted them. They might love it; they might hate. Just try to release technically polished missions and accept bad reviews as just areas you can ace on the next mission your wrrite.

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