My old mods

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Gridlock
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My old mods

Post by Gridlock » Fri Feb 11, 2011 5:17

It seems there has been a lot of talk lately about old mod projects and the progression of modding skills over time. I think it should be possible to prove the point that modding skills develop over time and still make it fun for everyone.

I've decided to release some of my older Galaxy stuff to the community. Some of it is pretty bad. I don't consider any of these official mods, so don't take them too seriously. Notice how I've improved over time. A few of these do include readmes

First up, an old Keen 4 levelpack. A couple levels here are actually pretty good, but the tiling is pretty bad. I dont have a readme here, so do your best to find the levels. The minsweeper mines level is so glitchy that you can't even play through it. In hellvile there is a place near the start where a gemholder is "supposed" to let you get the gem below it by disabling a flame.

Download

http://files.commanderkeen.org/users/ke ... lvpack.zip

Next is a quick one level mod for Keen 4. The new graphics here are hideous, but it's still kinda cool and has a devilish secret on how to get some extra lives.

Download

http://files.commanderkeen.org/users/kevadams/Lava.zip

Next is a quick one and a half level expansion for Dead in the Desert. At one time, I'd wanted to make a full levelpack to honor Ceilick's mod. The finished level has some cliffs to it.

Download
http://files.commanderkeen.org/users/ke ... evpack.zip

My next thing is probably the best download I have to offer. This was a big mod project I was working on a little under 2 years ago, and it was the mod that pretty much came before Atroxian Realm. I think this was the best test mod I've ever done. My intent was to create a Keen 5 mod that borrowed some elements and story of Keen 1. Some of this is pretty cool, but I can assure you my work on Atroxian Realm is still a lot better. This one merits a screenshot.

Image

Download
http://files.commanderkeen.org/users/ke ... Redone.zip

Edit: You can download my first attempt at making Keen 1 Redone here. It's completely different than the above link.
http://dl.dropbox.com/u/22195447/Old%20K1R.zip

Sadly, my very first Keen levels ever accidently got deleted thanks to a fatal bug in The Photachon Tranciever. It had to do with saving a level in the editor while already having a copy of the game open. This would corrupt all levels permanetly.

Besides giving you guys something to play, my point is that your first mods are not going to be spectacular. I would spend a lot of time toying around with Keen before you commit to something serious.

Edit: I put these in other keen stuff since they really aren't completed mods.
Last edited by Gridlock on Thu Jul 14, 2011 22:57, edited 1 time in total.

Ceilick
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Post by Ceilick » Fri Feb 11, 2011 6:46

Wow, these are pretty neat. And I agree completely with the thought behind posting these: Modding is a process and a modders skills improve with each mod they work on. Additionally, modders who abandon their work should make the community aware of their accomplishments, even if they're incomplete or not as good as they could have been!

Played through each of these quickly, my favorite is your first level for a keen 8 levelpack (maybe I'm biased :O ). Really like your new music and really like the way you worked with the red mountain tiles in conjunction with the desert.

Also really like some of the tiles you did for converting keen 1 to the galaxy style... I've actually got my own tileset for such an endeavor...this may require collaboration.

General comment on level design: Several of the levels are huge and in some cases chaotic and sprawling. As these are abandoned, I suspect this is part of the reason for abandonment, but just mentioning this for the sake of level design theory and food for thought.

These kind of levels aren't enjoyable in my opinion. They are mazes of hallways and corridors, rather than having a feeling of a natural, organic environment. several levels in the Keen 4 levelpack, for example, give the impression on the player that they've been thrown in some maze/arena that they need to get Keen through. Compare this to the level design of the original keen 4, of which the levels give the sense of a natural setting in which to explore; Keen isn't thrown into a death trap/arena. Even keen 5 levels in an industrial setting give a sense of 'exploring the ship' rather than strict "get through the hazards.

It's definitely a hard thing to accomplish; I can find numerous problems of this sort in my own galaxy mods.

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Post by mortimer » Fri Feb 11, 2011 15:58

Really liked the keen1 redone one, great idea. Level design is quite clever, and the use of keen1 graphics/sprites is done well!
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Post by DaVince » Fri Feb 11, 2011 16:20

Keen 1 redone is a good idea, though it had a few oddities in how the graphics look or how it plays. Still, this is what I want a remake of Keen 1 to look like!
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MOM4Evr
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Post by MOM4Evr » Fri Feb 11, 2011 17:24

Wow... the Keen1 Redone mod is awesome! I definitely would love to see this carried to completion. It looks incredibly cool, and has that cool Keen1 feel to it. (Keen1 is closely tied to Keen4 for my favorite episode)

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tulip
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Post by tulip » Fri Feb 11, 2011 20:49

oh man I'm speechless, so many goodies in one day. That's gonna make my weekend hopefully.
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Gridlock
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Post by Gridlock » Fri Feb 11, 2011 22:08

Keen 1 Redone was a pretty fun to thing to work on. I pretty much gave up on it when I started the snow levels. (Hint- there is an entire secret area that you can reach at the start of the snow level.) The later part of that level looks pretty imcoplete, and that's pretty much where I stopped. I think I've gotten much better at modding since then, and I didn't really think I'd ever be able to finish it, nor did I really think it was worth it. I suppose someone may want the tilesets, but please ask for permission first. I also realize there are a good amount of graphical bugs and other things that may not look quite right.

Also, I had intended that you can't use pogo here. If the level design seems odd it is probably because of this.

Remember, there is no need to put too much thought into improvement with these since they will probably never be touched by me again. It is interesting to hear what people like or dislike, though. I figured it could be fun for people to play some of these. Might as well not let old work go to waste.
General comment on level design: Several of the levels are huge and in some cases chaotic and sprawling. As these are abandoned, I suspect this is part of the reason for abandonment, but just mentioning this for the sake of level design theory and food for thought.

These kind of levels aren't enjoyable in my opinion. They are mazes of hallways and corridors, rather than having a feeling of a natural, organic environment. several levels in the Keen 4 levelpack, for example, give the impression on the player that they've been thrown in some maze/arena that they need to get Keen through. Compare this to the level design of the original keen 4, of which the levels give the sense of a natural setting in which to explore; Keen isn't thrown into a death trap/arena. Even keen 5 levels in an industrial setting give a sense of 'exploring the ship' rather than strict "get through the hazards.
This is really true, I suppose. That K4 levelpack is pretty aweful when it comes to level design in most cases. I think my style has improved over time so that I've been able to make things better. Atroxian Realm will contain levels that fit the environment better and are hopefully well layed-out. There still will be a few large levels, but I think (or at least hope) that I've done a much better job with them. New graphics, enemies, and other mechanics help. :)

I'm hoping this will help serve as an important message to those who wish to make gigantic Keen mods with little experience. You can see how some of my first mods turned out.

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tulip
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Post by tulip » Mon Feb 14, 2011 16:20

These were fun, but I'm especially happy you feel the same about those K4 levels. Too large, too much backtracking.

Also: many doors with a single right one an many false ones w/o any clues is never a good idea.
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Gridlock
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Post by Gridlock » Mon Feb 14, 2011 21:45

Also: many doors with a single right one an many false ones w/o any clues is never a good idea.
The funny thing is, I don't even remember which is correct, so these days when I rarely do play it I just cheat to get to the desired location.

Some of the levels, I think, have clever ideas, but they just weren't executed very well. If I had to pick the most clever level from the K4 pack, I'd probably say it is the Pyramid of Shadows replacement (which I never remembered to rename to "Pyramid of Puzzles") The central idea of the level "Pearl Pit" will appear in Atroxian Realm, however it will be 10x better.

Also, did anyone notice that I made the "ID" tiles in K1Redone kill Keen?

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MOM4Evr
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Post by MOM4Evr » Mon Feb 14, 2011 22:04

Gridlock wrote:Also, did anyone notice that I made the "ID" tiles in K1Redone kill Keen?
Yep. :) Nice touch.

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Post by Lingyan203 » Mon Jul 18, 2011 1:51

Yo, do you plan on finishing Keen 1 Redone anytime?

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Gridlock
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Post by Gridlock » Mon Jul 18, 2011 3:07

Keen 1 Redone will be left abandoned. However, there very well may be another similar Vorticons project sometime in the future. Since I have nothing to do with it, I won't say anymore.

Keen 1 Redone now has a wiki page here:
http://www.shikadi.net/keenwiki/Keen_1_Redone

Furthmore, in the first post I added a link to an earlier, completely different version of K1R. This version quickly had been abandoned.

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Eros
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Post by Eros » Mon Jul 18, 2011 12:51

i noticed in the QED (thank you warp cheat), the shikadi do the exact same thing as cybloogs do in BOTB.

perhaps instead of just one redone, K1R can be used as a connector over all 3 vorticon games?
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Post by Kraigose » Mon Jul 18, 2011 13:17

I think the Keen 1 Redone mod looks pretty cool, considering the tiles from Keen 1 are not isometric. Good job tweaking them to make them somewhat isometric. :)
I wonder how Commander Keen eats all that food and only gains points, not calories.

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Post by Syllypryde » Sun Nov 06, 2011 13:43

Bump:

Gridlock, in the snow level on Keen1 Redone, is there an exit? I have found everything else, the secret room at the beginning and endless tunnels of secret passages towards the end of the level, but no exit?
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