Captain
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 5,446
So, I've gotten involved in Foundry mission reviews and have decided to make a thread of detailed playthrough reviews for them, much like Stoutes and Evil70th.

A detailed review is made during play, so I'll be jotting down side comments in addition to stuff I like and stuff you might want to change. I will also look for typos, point them out, and highlight my changes in red. I also RP a bit, and may note where race-specific dialog options might be useful (ref: my remarks on "The Bajoran" by djf021). Lack of them is not a black mark against you, just something to consider adding.

I review Starfleet missions using a budget, semi-canon weapons-booster build of the T4 Galaxy-class exploration cruiser. The build can be found on STO Academy here. This is partly to see how difficult the mission is combatwise if you don't have a crazy-minmaxed ship (I found running missions in my Fleet Avenger to be too easy ), and partly because there's just something about the GCS I like.

I review on a full five-point scale. One star out of five is given only if there are game-breaking bugs, such as the issue in "Left to Die" where the player's ship spawns inside an asteroid. Five out of five is given if I thoroughly enjoyed myself and the mission was well-written and well-choreographed, and if there aren't any major typos (I'm a bit of a grammar Nazi). Remember, this is one man's opinion, not absolute fact.

Current queue status.

RULES:
-- Post your mission details (at minimum, title, your in-game handle, faction, minimum level, and a link to your mission's forum thread if you have one) and I will add them to the queue/.
-- I will also occasionally review missions on my own, for example in the review-trading thread, and will repost here.
-- I do not review grinders or farmers because I hate them and think Cryptic should give General Order 24 against all of them.
-- I physically cannot review any mission starting at the Donatu System in Eta Eridani Sector Block because the system is bugged for me (its interact dialog will not show up except for the Cryptic mission "Skirmish").

I can review Fed, KDF, and Fed Rom missions of any level.
Capt. Kanril Eleya, U.S.S. Andraste, Strike Team Alpha

Useful Links for Foundry Writers | "Bait and Switch" -- Fed Foundry project, Part 1 rewards-qualified!
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Last edited by starswordc; 05-13-2014 at 07:11 PM. Reason: mission requirements updated
Captain
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 5,446
StarSword-C's Detailed Review of "A Time to Search" by @lincolninspace, Stardate 91457.95 (11/08/2013). Originally posted here.

I'll be doing remarks map by map as I go through them. "Convo" will be shorthand for "conversation". With typos, the changes I make will be in red.

-----------------------------------------
Map of the observatory (forgot to check the name):
Interesting way to build a transporter pad. Nice for a unique look.

Love all the little details like the racks of ship models.

Love the HHGTTG shout-out in the bar, and the cantina area looks very good. (They're even preparing food by hand instead of replicating!)

Console in room with Undine says "Interact" instead of something custom.

Convo with L'var:
-- Player: "It still is weighing heavilly on my mind." -> "... heavily on my mind."
-- Player: "Your still not as Vulcan as I am." -> "You're..." or "You are..."

Convo with Kurland and Garak:
-- The facsimile of Kurland is okay. I think his skin tone is grayer in the game but we don't have access to it.
-- Dialog headed "Naturally." is missing Kurland's face.
-- I don't think Cardassians have mustaches or eyebrows like Garak's clerk does.
-- Good job duplicating Garak's dialog patterns, but I think you made his eyes and nose slightly too large.
-- Player: "What is hs password?" -> "... his password?"
-- Garak: "Your welcome Captain ..." -> "You're welcome, Captain..."

-----------------------------------------
Map "Deep Space":

Transwarp conduit says "Interact" instead of something custom.

Just wondering, what the heck asset did you use for that yellow flash when the ship goes to transwarp? Never seen it before.

Upon reaching the end of the transwarp, I personally would have triggered the appearance of the new star system with an interact object using the "warp in" animation. Going back to impulse felt a little sudden without it.

-----------------------------------------
Map "Droxine City Spaceport":

Clever security scanner design, and I always find custom-built interiors impressive because I don't have the patience to construct them.

Convo with historian:
-- First two dialogue options need periods at the end.
-- Did I travel through time? Because the current year in Star Trek Online is 2409, and the historian claims Droxine was under Cardassian rule until 2411.

Monty Python and the Holy Grail shout-out FTW!

-----------------------------------------
Map "Droxine City":

Interesting parkour scenario.

Why reskinned Jem'Hadar and Romulans as Cardassian mobs instead of just Cardassians?

-----------------------------------------
Map "Dive Bar":

Wisest Tribble console says "Interact" instead of something custom.

Just a side comment, the Amphibian is quite possibly the weirdest rubber-forehead alien I've ever seen anybody make in the Foundry.

Convo with the Amphibian:
-- Amphibian: ... on one of the moons of Kinjun II" is missing a period at the end, as is the player's response to it.

Objectives: The word 'commission' has two 'm's.

Convo with tentacle alien:
-- Player: Unnaceptable -> Unacceptable. One 'n', two 'c's.

Convo with Butler Okona at dabo table:
-- Okona: "Your in Starfleet. Why not take one of you own ships?" -> "You're in Starfleet. Why not take one of your own ships?"
-- Player: "I will pay you handsomely" missing period.
-- Okona: "... with the Thot and his crony's." -> "... with the Thot and his cronies."

Was something supposed to happen with the Nausicaans? He just said "You are a dead man!" and let me walk past.

Convo with Kell on ship:
-- Okona over PA system:
---- "Ships public adress" -> "Ship's public address"
---- "Heading is set we are ready to go to warp." -> "Heading is set. We are ready to go to warp." or something similar.

-----------------------------------------
Map "Moon Surface":

I like the way the map is set up to allow you to sneak between and around the Breen mob groups if you time it right. You are supposed to be being stealthy here, after all.

Map transition dialog:
-- Tac Officer: "thoseexplosives" -> "those explosives"

-----------------------------------------
Map "Abandoned Mine":

Objectives: "Set up us the bomb"? Zero Wing? Really? (Not criticizing, just made me roll my eyes a bit.)

Second charge, inside the mine, is already visible when "Set up charges" interact is up. I would change that one to an invisible object or something of that nature. It also fails to disappear after detonating.

Why are my boffs suddenly attacking the magma?

Crate on one of the catwalks in the southwestern room is floating in midair.

-----------------------------------------
Map "Erstwhile V Interior":

Initial interact object says "Interact" instead of something custom.

Convo with tac officer:
-- "... has a forcfield door." -> "... has a forcefield door."

I like the way you handled the explosive decompression effect.

Convo with Trajan:
-- "I am ammassing a fortune here and you and your crew have gotten in my way. Lets just say..." -> I am amassing a fortune here and you and your crew have gotten in my way. Let's just say..."

Convo with Erstwhile V crew:
-- Sshallah: "Were gonna need a miracle Captain!" -> "We're gonna need a miracle, Captain!"

-----------------------------------------
Map "Kinjun II":

Why reskinned Hirogen as Breen mobs instead of just using Breen?

-----------------------------------------
Overall score: 4/5.

Pros: The maps are extremely well-designed and choreographed. I particularly liked the spaceport map and the explosive decompression effect. I also found the various shout-outs amusing. Finally, I really liked how well you duplicated Elim Garak's speech patterns (he's one of my favorite DS9 characters).

Cons: A lot of typos, particularly underuse of commas (early on I gave up trying to keep track of them except when there was another typo to grab). Also some questionable mob choices.
Capt. Kanril Eleya, U.S.S. Andraste, Strike Team Alpha

Useful Links for Foundry Writers | "Bait and Switch" -- Fed Foundry project, Part 1 rewards-qualified!
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Captain
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 5,446
# 3
11-21-2013, 10:25 AM
StarSword-C's Detailed Review of "Healing Old Wounds" by @aleniskendra, Stardate 91462.85 (11/09/2013). Originally posted here.

I tested this using the USS Bajor NCC-97238, a Galaxy-class exploration cruiser with a semi-canonical budget loadout.

I'll be doing remarks map by map as I go through them. "Convo" will be shorthand for "conversation". With typos, the changes I make will be in red.


-----------------------------------------
Mission offer popup is a little clinical, and based on the storyline you could have easily been more unique and used the Cryptic map Hathon itself as the starting point rather than going to the overused console at Earth Spacedock.

-----------------------------------------
Map "Warp":

Map is completely superfluous and could easily be removed without affecting mission flow in the slightest.

Map transition dialogue:
-- Player: "Go to Warp7 !" -> "Go to Warp 7!"

-----------------------------------------
Map "Plotting a course through Bajoran space":

Map is completely superfluous and could easily be removed without affecting mission flow in the slightest. Hathon, Bajor's capital city, is available as a Cryptic map and could easily be used as the mission starting point instead of running through two unnecessary maps.

-----------------------------------------
Map "Bajoran Surface":

The map is extremely empty. What I would have done instead is build an interior map (your contact's house, or whatever) reached via the Hathon Cryptic map, or possibly just have the entire conversation with your contact done over a screen and then enter the mission proper from one of the map's entry points.

Failing that, use the Bajoran System as the mission entry point from sector space (I think we can do that but I haven't checked). Use the costume designer to randomly generate several Bajoran costumes and scatter them about the mission. You can also reskin Federation mobs as Bajorans and use the "Patrol" behavior to get groups of people walking around. If you haven't already done so, I recommend you take a look at Kirkfat's tutorial videos for more information on NPC behavior settings (I don't have the link handy but it's in the Useful Links thread in my forum signature under Guides IIRC).

-----------------------------------------
Map "Deep Space Nine (Space)":

Map is completely superfluous and could easily be removed without affecting mission flow in the slightest.

-----------------------------------------
Map "Deep Space Nine (Station)":

Similar problem as the Hathon map: The place could use some livening up. You don't need the whole station, though: Consider blocking off part of it (maybe the sections down- and up-spin from spawn and your contact are closed off for maintenance and blocked off with barricades of some sort).

-----------------------------------------
Map "Warp to Cardassia":

Map is completely superfluous and could easily be removed without affecting mission flow in the slightest.

-----------------------------------------
Map "Cardassian Space":

Convo with True Way captain:
-- Consider using a premade Cardassian costume for the captain so you can get the uniform.

Fight comments:
-- Setting issue: The True Way are Cardassian ultra-nationalists. I don't personally see them using Nausicaan hired guns; they'd be more likely to use their own people. I'd swap the Nausicaans out for Cardie mobs.
-- Side comment: Whatever guff people give Cryptic's version of the Galaxy-class starship in this game, I'd forgotten how good the USS Bajor looked with all batteries firing, and how fun it is to surprise mobs with a rear-facing torpedo launcher. Torpedo: Spread I + Quantum Torpedo Launcher Mk X [Acc] [CrtD] = cool win.

-----------------------------------------
Map "Conference Room":

Map could be removed without affecting story flow. If it were me, I would place an invisible object on the previous map, with the activation animation being the transporter beam. You then make the conversation with the Cardassians a storyboard dialogue. And then maybe while you were grabbing them, the True Way captain called for reinforcements.

Convo with Alket and Taselle:
-- Dialog header: "Memory Alpha is reknowned, even on Cardassia Prime." -> "Memory Alpha is renowned, even on Cardassia Prime."

-----------------------------------------
Map with transwarp conduit (didn't catch the name):

Map is completely superfluous and could easily be removed without affecting mission flow in the slightest. Or, in this case, you could have had the True Way captain call for reinforcements.

-----------------------------------------
Map "Exiting Transwarp":

Map is completely superfluous and could easily be removed without affecting mission flow in the slightest.

-----------------------------------------
Map "Memory Alpha":

Map's first couple of rooms are very empty and could use additional details like consoles and equipment and the like.

You should use the "Legacy Contact" behavior for Nurse Rassa. That way she won't spam her chat bubble. See Kirkfat's tutorial videos for more information on how to program "Legacy Contact" behavior.

Taselle, Alket, and Laakar should just have their names over their heads when you mouse over them. You should change the contacts' names (not the costumes, just their instances on the map) to the characters' names.

Fight with the Circle:
-- Consider having an NPC explain who the Circle are, for the benefit of players who haven't seen the season two premiere of Deep Space Nine. I have watched those episodes recently and I only remembered who they were a few minutes later.
-- On a technical perspective, the Bajoran assassins all have numbers after them. You should change each actor to just "Bajoran Assassin". As for the mobs used, I don't have a problem with your choice of Orions for reskinning, though I personally would have used reskinned True Way. (In Deep Space Nine, Cardassian and Bajoran small arms shoot the same color phaser beam, given that the latter stole most of their weapons from the former.)

The Breen NPC is titled "Breen Commander Science Male 01". Consider naming him something unique.

The console for objective "Identify which viral proteins must be disabled." has an unattached screen that is currently floating in midair. Consider changing consoles or backing it up against something.

Objectives could be less wordy. Conciseness matters for these a lot more than it does for character dialogue (people run off at the mouth, objectives should be short and to-the-point).

Side comment: Teehee, I get to perform experiments on one of those annoying little puffballs!

-----------------------------------------
Map "Return to Beta Ursae Sector Block":

Map is completely superfluous and could easily be removed without affecting mission flow in the slightest.

-----------------------------------------
Map about returning to Bajor (didn't catch the title):

Map is completely superfluous and could easily be removed without affecting mission flow in the slightest.

-----------------------------------------
Map "Bajor Planet (End)":

I bypassed the force field by walking in from the side of the building before I realized the guard was out in front of it. You either need more force fields, or you need to place it blocking the door itself (I personally would do the latter: it's less work).

Cure crate is floating about 0.1 meters off the ground (guesstimating). I would turn off snap-to-grid temporarily and adjust its y-coordinate.

-----------------------------------------
Map "Bajoran Space Final":

Map is completely superfluous and could easily be removed without affecting mission flow in the slightest.

The spawn point is inside Bajor's atmosphere and most Starfleet ships really aren't supposed to go any lower than low orbit. I would move the spawn point further away from the planet.

-----------------------------------------
Overall Score: 2/5.

Pros: The story concept is good and the dialogue is usually okay.

Cons: The dialogue is a bit flat at times (for example: Taselle just had her father get murdered right in front of her, but then in the next room she's all business). And the maps need work. Easily half of them could be culled completely without really affecting anything, and the ones to keep are awfully empty.

EDIT: aleniskendra is doing a revamp of the mission. I'll re-review when s/he's finished.
Capt. Kanril Eleya, U.S.S. Andraste, Strike Team Alpha

Useful Links for Foundry Writers | "Bait and Switch" -- Fed Foundry project, Part 1 rewards-qualified!
Say no to Arc! STO standalone installer

Last edited by starswordc; 11-21-2013 at 11:27 AM.
Lieutenant
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 90
# 4
11-21-2013, 11:19 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by starswordc View Post
StarSword-C's Detailed Review of "Healing Old Wounds" by @aleniskendra, Stardate 91462.85 (11/09/2013). Originally posted here.
-----------------------------------------
Overall Score: 2/5.

Pros: The story concept is good and the dialogue is usually okay.

Cons: The dialogue is a bit flat at times (for example: Taselle just had her father get murdered right in front of her, but then in the next room she's all business). And the maps need work. Easily half of them could be culled completely without really affecting anything, and the ones to keep are awfully empty.
Just to reiterate, for other readers of this review... I will be doing a major overhaul of this mission, just as soon as my Foundry capability is restored. (It's down, due to the game update.)
My very first Foundry Mission, Healing Old Wounds, has been completely reworked and rereleased!
(Also, a quick shout-out, please visit Starbase UGC for all your Foundry needs!)
Captain
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 5,446
# 5
11-21-2013, 11:27 AM
^Yeah, I forgot about that. Sorry. Noted it in my review.
Capt. Kanril Eleya, U.S.S. Andraste, Strike Team Alpha

Useful Links for Foundry Writers | "Bait and Switch" -- Fed Foundry project, Part 1 rewards-qualified!
Say no to Arc! STO standalone installer
Survivor of Romulus
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 3,897
# 6
11-21-2013, 11:28 AM
Starswordc, congratulations with your topic and good luck with the reviews! I'm glad to see more and more people willing to help others with their reviews!
^^ I am Stoutes, and I approve of my message (and inb4exploit!) ^^
Captain
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 5,446
# 7
11-21-2013, 12:51 PM
I've rearranged my queue because sovereign77x's "Forget Me Not" has been republished. I'll be doing that one later today after I run some STFs (saving for a MACO set).

Thanks for the support, Stoutes!
Capt. Kanril Eleya, U.S.S. Andraste, Strike Team Alpha

Useful Links for Foundry Writers | "Bait and Switch" -- Fed Foundry project, Part 1 rewards-qualified!
Say no to Arc! STO standalone installer
Captain
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 5,498
# 8
11-21-2013, 01:30 PM
Mission: Of Morals and Ethics
Faction: Fed
Level: 35+
@voporak

The picture in my sig is a link to the thread. Right now it's not available since missions are still being republished and I haven't been able to see if it got broken.
Lieutenant
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 38
# 9
11-21-2013, 01:46 PM
I would love for you to take a look at my two-parter...

Whenever the missions get re-published, that is...

Mission Name: Contact Squared Part 1
Author: eldil
Minimum Level: 41+
Allegiance: Federation
Project ID: ST-HDKD38CDP
Estimated Mission Length: 1hour 30minutes

Mission Name: Contact Squared Part 2
Author: eldil
Minimum Level: 41+
Allegiance: Federation
Project ID: ST-HJID8YSBG
Estimated Mission Length: 1hour 30 minutes
----------My Missions----------
Contact Squared Part 1
Contact Squared Part 2
Contact Squared: Tribunal (coming soon)
Contact Squared: Shadows (coming... not as soon...)
Captain
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 5,446
# 10
11-21-2013, 03:03 PM
All right, you two are at queue positions 4, and 5 and 6 respectively.
Capt. Kanril Eleya, U.S.S. Andraste, Strike Team Alpha

Useful Links for Foundry Writers | "Bait and Switch" -- Fed Foundry project, Part 1 rewards-qualified!
Say no to Arc! STO standalone installer
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