Keen 6 Least Favorite Level?

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Vote for your 3 least favorite levels.

1.) Bloogwaters Crossing
0
No votes
2.) Guard Post One
0
No votes
3.) First Dome of Darkness
3
7%
4.) Second Dome of Darkness
1
2%
5.) Bloogdome
2
5%
6.) Bloogton Manufacturing
5
11%
7.) Bloogton Tower
12
27%
8.) Bloogfoods, Inc.
2
5%
9.) Guard Post Two
1
2%
10.) Bloogville
2
5%
11.) Bloog Aeronautics and Space Administration
9
20%
12.) Guard Post Three
1
2%
13.) Bloogbase Recreational District
0
No votes
14.) Bloogbase Management District
1
2%
15.) Bloog Control Center
2
5%
16.) Blooglab Space Station
3
7%
 
Total votes: 44

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proYorp
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Keen 6 Least Favorite Level?

Post by proYorp »

Which levels do you skip playing, or put off as long as you can? Why? Which ones seem to become more tedious than fun?

Level reference list: https://keenwiki.shikadi.net/wiki/Keen_6_Levels

Vote for up to 3 options, preferably as many as you can think of since we only have a small user base to collect data from. You may change your votes later if you change your mind. There is no time limit.



Special thanks to Fleexy for agreeing to change the poll size limit to 20. Now all the levels can fit into the list! :D I considered including the Bean-with-Bacon Megarocket in the options but I feel that it would have an unfair "advantage" in skippability and could easily become a votesink.

I have done a tremendous job of completely failing to participate in both the Keen 5 level discussions. I still plan to at some point but even though I haven't done that first I realize now may be a good time to open up some Keen 6 research. ;)



The previous polls in the level rankings series are here:
Keen 4 Least Favorite Level?
Keen 4 Most Favorite Level?
Keen 5 Least Favorite Level?
Keen 5 Most Favorite Level?
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Benvolio
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Re: Keen 6 Least Favorite Level?

Post by Benvolio »

It's been years since I've given Keen6 an honest play so I don't feel I can fairly give three votes. But I always disliked the Bloogton Tower so I'm giving it a vote.
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Re: Keen 6 Least Favorite Level?

Post by proYorp »

Fair enough. I want to do a good thoughtful playthrough before voting but I have some ideas off the top of my head. Lol... maybe that extra effort is what's been holding me up from doing the other polls. :crazy
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Nospike
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Re: Keen 6 Least Favorite Level?

Post by Nospike »

I always skip BASA. I actually don't think I've ever completed the level, it confuses me. :lol
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Re: Keen 6 Least Favorite Level?

Post by Ceilick »

1. The First Dome of Darkness: I think this level is just filler and scraping the barrel for creativity. The upper area is overly simple but might get a pass if the entire underground of the level wasn't complete nonsense.

2. Bloog Aeronautics and Space Administration: I think the requirement for the player to travel behind the foreground to progress in this level is, in terms of level design, criminal. What is otherwise an average level is broken by this.

3. Bloogton Tower: Vertical levels are tough to design, and honestly this one isn't so bad but just not fun to play for two reasons, imo. I think this level could be fixed to be an average level without even changing the ''pathing'. Simply remove all the foreground hiding the goplats (it is disorienting) and include more variation in the backgrounds of rooms (everything being the same is disorienting). A more aggressive fix to help break the level into achievable segments might be too break up the central elevator shaft into separate shafts positioned uniquely on each floor.

Runners up for my least favorite levels are Bloogton Manufacturing and Bloogbase Management District. Like the First Dome of Darkness, I think these are rushed and lack creativity.
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Re: Keen 6 Least Favorite Level?

Post by childofhale »

While I don't think Keen 6 has really any bad levels, here are my picks.

Bloogton manufacturing: Nothing wrong with it really, but relatively forgettable.
BASA: Fleex.
Secret level: Underwhelming compared to the secret levels of 4 and 5.

While Bloogton tower can be annoying I still enjoy the atmosphere of it, and the rare Bobba at the top is a nice touch.
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Re: Keen 6 Least Favorite Level?

Post by lemm »

The tower is the worst. So much waiting for elevators. Bloogton manufacturing wasn't good either; bloogfoods did everything better with the factory tileset.
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Re: Keen 6 Least Favorite Level?

Post by Soul Monster »

Bloogville: There's a few nice ideas in this stage, but I get irritated with it pretty quickly, mainly because the whole stage is full of cheap deaths and unfair challenge. There's a lot of hallways with low ceilings that are crawling with Giks which are nearly impossible to avoid, in one section of the stage it involves jumping around on poles, and some of the jumps you're expected to make are way too difficult, and the positioning of some of the Ceilicks are really annoying too. Overall, it's not a required stage, it's just filler to rack up some extra points, but man do I dread playing it when I go through 6, because I know that the only way I'll be able to get through it is with a lot of save scumming.

BASA: I actually don't mind this one as much, as it's cool to see the Fleex in action, but like Ceilick said, it's very wrong to have a level that requires you to travel behind the foreground in what is played up like a secret, which is one of the most annoying things in the game. Other than that, there's not much of interest in it.

Bloogton Tower: Talk about wasted space, this is one of my most hated stages in the entire Keen series, and it doesn't help that it's required to beat the game. Like Ceilick said, it's just not fun to play, and for me it goes beyond his reasoning. For one, there is so much dead space in this level, and so much of it is obscured by the foreground. The majority of the bottom of the stage is just empty, with hardly anything of substance in it. Furthermore, most of the stage is spent just either riding goplats or waiting for them to come back so you can ride them all over again, and with how much backtracking there is in this stage, it gets tedious very fast. Thank God for the impossible bullet trick.
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Re: Keen 6 Least Favorite Level?

Post by Roobar »

What? Bloog Aeronautics and Space Administration (or BASA for short) deservers praise for the name itself alone! While the level is not spectacular, it's also not bad either. The fact that you need to walk behind some walls never really bothered me in any way. I even think it's a cool idea. Definitely not deserving to be least favorable. Also, that level helped in finding a glitch that allows you to bypass a door, which is cool. And it's a level I remember where there are many fleexies. And it's not that difficult level as well.

For me, the least favorable are the Dome of Darkness levels and the Bloogton Tower level. Even though the tower also have plenty of foreground tiles, it still has it's charm and is aiming at something really cool - a tall business building. Yes, this level could be much more, if you add more office equipment to it. But I can't anything I like about the Dome of Darkness levels though.
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Re: Keen 6 Least Favorite Level?

Post by proYorp »

Bloog Aeronatics and Space Administration is a very nifty name, though it is ultimately a play on NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration).

And of course, everyone is entitled to their own opinion. No one is wrong for liking or disliking a particular level; the goal of this poll is to gather collective opinion and figure out the strengths and weaknesses of each level to learn how to refine our own design. I wonder if BASA may turn out to be one of those controversial levels like Crystalus, loved by some and hated by as many or more.



When I was filling out the poll options, I noticed just how... repetitive the level names are in Keen 6. 11 out of 16 names have the word "Bloog" tacked onto the beginning, two Domes of Darkness differentiated only by number, three Guard Posts the same way. Of course technically you could blame the Bloogs for being uncreative with their naming abilities. :p

The most creative one, in my opinion, is Bloogwaters Crossing. Somehow it fits the level very well.

It also came to my attention that the Manufacturing and Tower are both named Bloogton. Perhaps that little cul-de-sac is a region called Bloogton, like the Keen Dreams levels are placed into named regions in the lore.

Soul Monster wrote: Mon Feb 13, 2023 9:33 Thank God for the impossible bullet trick.
How providential that the episode with the most egregious physics exploit is also the episode with the most awkward geometry to navigate. :lol
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Re: Keen 6 Least Favorite Level?

Post by Lower IQ than 314 »

I, too, think Bloogton Tower is the worst level, for many of the reasons already listed, but also because "To the Future" is possibly the most irritating composition for Keen that Bobby Prince ever wrote. Guess that's yet another knock against BASA, too. :lol I would've included Blooglab Space Station as a vote in the unholy trinity of "To the Future" levels, but decided against it, in favor of the First Dome of Darkness. What a disjointed level. The upper half of the level is insultingly easy, while the lower half is ridiculous. I almost never go down there when I play, and when I do, I tend to just use the jump cheat, because the platform ride is interminably long, dull, and just plain not fun.
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Re: Keen 6 Least Favorite Level?

Post by StupidBunny »

It's been a while since I've posted here, but I saw that this poll was finally up and have been sitting on it for far too long. Also I got my password back so there's that too

Bloogton Tower. Is it even a contest? The worst level in all the latter three episodes, a long, dull, gray exercise in tedium from start to finish. Almost all of the gameplay time is spent either backtracking, or slowly, agonizingly waiting for platforms to quickly appear from behind hidden shafts while in the process of backtracking. And then after spending a thousand hours doing that you get to try (on Hard anyway) dodging bobba shots while riding another slow-moving platform over a sea of nukage and giks. All of this is set to the game's most irritating song, all like 8 seconds of it looping eternally as an exclamation point on the brain-smoothing boredom contained therein. It's pretty much everything I don't like about Keen 6, which is itself in my top three favorite episodes of any game ever. If I were to compliment it at all I'd say I do like the large windows, they sure let in a lot of sun.

BASA. This was an easy choice for #2, although I like it a lot more than the Bloogton Tower. It's actually a decent level overall, although it's not got as much personality as much of the rest of the game. The main strikes against it are the one-way platforming systems, which make it easy to get softlocked out of finishing it if your timing isn't good; that one Fleex in the tiny pit downstairs on Hard, which is nearly impossible to get rid of without savescumming; and the giks.

The First Dome of Darkness. #3 was a much harder choice to make. There's a couple level that I have issues with, like Bloogville and its absolute infestation of giks, or Bloogton Mfg. Inc. which has kind of a weird unrefined layout with lots of backtracking and dead space and ledges that Keen can't actually pull himself onto, but they make up for it with character and some fun platforming--Bloogville, appropriately, is one of the most "lived in"-feeling levels of the game, with tons of exploring to do, and that indoor arboretum or greenhouse or whatever it is is an especially brillant touch.

The First Dome is for the most part an unremarkable level without any such character to it, and while I usually like levels with huge optional and/or secret areas the underground here is just a big square cave containing a fairly annoying winding platform gauntlet, while the main area of the level just doesn't have a lot going on, and the near-total lack of threats upstairs make the whole thing feel rather redundant. This compounded by the barren, orthogonal design of the level, making the whole thing kind of a disappointment. The Second Dome is much cooler, but that's a conversation for another thread.
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Re: Keen 6 Least Favorite Level?

Post by Snortimer »

I'm voting for Bloogfoods here, as something about the feel of this level stresses me out. And it feels too easy to fall onto something dangerous. I don't actually mind Bloogton Manufacturing, by comparison.

I agree that Bloogton Towers is annoying, with all the waiting for GoPlats. Not annoying enough for me to really dislike, though.

I don't really like BASA because there's one section at the end with a Fleex in a really narrow spot that's mandatory to get past and that I have to save/load multiple times to pass, as it usually kills me before I can get my shots in. Other than that, it's ok but kinda boring.

I LIKE all the Dome levels, wouldn't vote for any of them.

Overall, Keen 6 is my favourite game in the series and I think most of the levels are great. I like how much variety there is, how each part of the world has its own clear "story" and cast of characters. That helps make up for any potential flaws in the level design, for me.

Frankly, maybe the problem with Bloogfoods for me is that the level design didn't seem to have much to do with food manufacturing.
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Re: Keen 6 Least Favorite Level?

Post by Syllypryde »

I choose The Bloogdome, Bloogville and Bloogbase Management District as my least favorite levels. I very rarely if ever skip levels in any official Keen game or mod. The only level off the top of my head that I know for a fact I skip most of the time is Impossible Palace in the Keen 8 Community Level Pack.
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