Keen 8: Dead in the Desert

Here is where to post about the latest Commander Keen fangame or modification you've finished, a new website you've made, or another Keen-related creation.
Post Reply
Ceilick
The Dude
Posts: 1538
Joined: Mon Sep 22, 2008 20:10
Location: Seattle

Keen 8: Dead in the Desert

Post by Ceilick » Wed Jul 22, 2009 4:15

Commander Keen in “The Universe is Toastâ€￾

Episode 8: Dead in the Desert!

Yes, it's finally here! But there's been more than just me behind this project and I'd like to to give them all a shout out.

This mod would not be what it is without the incredible patching skills possessed by Levellass. I can always count on her to find a solution to my patching needs, not to mention that since she's a fellow keen 4-6 modder, she has plenty of know-how and ideas that have both inspired and motivated me with this project. Thanks Levellass!

Mr. M contacted me with a demo song a few months back, and I was thrilled with the talent he offered. He took to the Keen imf format like a fish to water and his stuff is masterful. He also provided some beta help too, isolated a few problems with his help. If anyone is looking for a composer for their game or mod, Mr. M's got my recommendations. Thanks Mr. M!

ZidaneA offered his talent's later in the modding process and, being unaware of his talent, I wasn't sure if there was going to be space in the mod. Given the simple cue “compose something desertyâ€￾, he blew me away with the awesome track “Snakes on a BwB Megarocketâ€￾ (the world map theme). Again, looking for a composer, ZidaneA has equal recommendation from me as Mr. M. Thanks ZidaneA!

Earlier this year, The Shifted One over on Keen modding sent me an email regarding some graphical contributions. These graphics are the secret level (resized by me) and the secret level name, as well as the corner posts for another level (don't want to give it away here). He's a talented artist, hopefully he'll have a mod of his own soon! Thanks The Shifted One!

Appreciating his comments for the Keys of Krodacia rerelease, I chose Arjak as one of my Beta Testers. Arjak provided plenty of feedback on little bugs and annoyances in levels, plus his comments on the general atmosphere have been much appreciated and helpful to me. Thanks Arjak!

Iv4n struck me as be able to find EVERY bug and glitch in every nook and corner of every level in the Keys of Krodacia—of course I had to choose him as a Beta Tester, and I'm glad I did. He provided lists of errors as well as screenshots of problems, not to mention blunt (but true) statements such as “this is bad level designâ€￾ and recommendations for certain areas. Thanks Iv4n!

Initially Mink was brought aboard to design the help section (which was done fantastically) and he also offered to do some Beta Testing. His feedback was comprehensive and extremely helpful in fixing bugs and improving the game environment significantly. Thanks Mink!

To the rest of the Keen Community, thanks for being fans. All the poking and prodding and instances of “maybe you could try thisâ€￾ and “how's progress going?â€￾ have really pushed me and kept me focused, and it's finally payed off. Thanks guys!

Without going on further, I give you “Dead in the Desertâ€￾. Hope you all enjoy, and I'm looking forward to hearing from all of you :)

Download: http://files.commanderkeen.org/users/ceilick/Keen8.zip

Edit: New version availible, contains several improvements:

http://files.commanderkeen.org/users/ce ... een8.2.zip

Improvements include:
-SGA signs for bridges and elevators in the hydro levels for better coordination
-Slight hydro level adjustments
-Boss' stunned body is no longer required to be shot to win
-Removed the giant boulder in boss level
-Lava lake no longer has the shortcut, but the lava falls is more spaced for easier crossing (easier, not easy )
-Giant Cactoid has shorter search period
-Menu now has a notice to look for external help file
-Stompers cause earthquakes, frequently
-The Ceilick replacement can now be found in the secret level
-New scorebox courtesy of Mr. M
-Removal of the Impossible Bullet trick (thanks to levellass' hardwork)
-Many minor graphical fixes

Also putting out the midi files for the game music:

http://files.commanderkeen.org/users/ce ... 0Music.zip
Last edited by Ceilick on Sat Sep 12, 2009 8:46, edited 2 times in total.

Genius314
Vorticon Elite
Posts: 843
Joined: Thu Nov 01, 2007 0:13

Post by Genius314 » Wed Jul 22, 2009 4:27

First! :p

Also, this looks awesome so far! The music sounds pretty good. Not much I can say right now, but I'll post more when I'm done! :D

User avatar
Levellass
S-Triazine
Posts: 5261
Joined: Tue Sep 23, 2008 6:40

Post by Levellass » Wed Jul 22, 2009 4:57

Brilliant! And even sooner than I expected. I'm going to go through this with a fine tooth comb (Read: Steal every idea possible) before I say any more. I'm sure I shan't be disappointed.
What you really need, not what you think you ought to want.

User avatar
_mr_m_
Vortimaestro
Posts: 423
Joined: Mon May 11, 2009 23:14
Location: A Midwest cornfield

Post by _mr_m_ » Wed Jul 22, 2009 5:20

Nice ending! I made a savegame from the 6th beta just before the end.

Just a heads-up:
Getting the ending seems to be hit-or-miss...
I killed the final boss once and got nothing. I left the level and re-entered, killed him and got the ending.

Don't know why, but whatever. I've finally played it start to finish!
"I just drew this stupid little fish." -- Tom Hall

Ceilick
The Dude
Posts: 1538
Joined: Mon Sep 22, 2008 20:10
Location: Seattle

Post by Ceilick » Wed Jul 22, 2009 5:24

Gotta shoot the boses' stunned body, that triggers the ending ;)

User avatar
_mr_m_
Vortimaestro
Posts: 423
Joined: Mon May 11, 2009 23:14
Location: A Midwest cornfield

Post by _mr_m_ » Wed Jul 22, 2009 5:27

Adding insult to injury..nice :lol


And a note to Vista users:
You may not be able to view the help file. I know I wasn't able to.
I got a "Navigation to Webpage was Cancelled" error.
I'm running Vista Ultimate SP1
Last edited by _mr_m_ on Wed Jul 22, 2009 6:26, edited 2 times in total.
"I just drew this stupid little fish." -- Tom Hall

Grimson
The Dragoner
Posts: 1803
Joined: Tue Jul 14, 2009 6:55

Post by Grimson » Wed Jul 22, 2009 5:28

I can't believe it's already released! :drool Great job Ceilick, great job all beta-testers, and everyone else working/contributing to this project.
"All those thousands upon thousands of junk foods made for me on the various planets I explored make me wonder how I'm still alive."

Ceilick
The Dude
Posts: 1538
Joined: Mon Sep 22, 2008 20:10
Location: Seattle

Post by Ceilick » Wed Jul 22, 2009 6:36

I'm also using Vista, not sure what version, but am able to open the help file, not sure what the problem could be. If anyone needs it, I can provided the story and other info in a txt file.

Also note, dosbox is pretty much a requirement for this mod. Iv4n and I have both had experience with crashing around level 2 without dosbox. As far as I know, this is generally due to level size, number of enemies, and enemy combinations. Whatever the case, use dosbox.

Sorry if this is an inconvenience for anyone, this is an unfortunate problem with keen 4-6 modding.

User avatar
_mr_m_
Vortimaestro
Posts: 423
Joined: Mon May 11, 2009 23:14
Location: A Midwest cornfield

Post by _mr_m_ » Wed Jul 22, 2009 7:27

Got it!

Vista sometimes blocks certain files if they came from a different computer. I guess compiled help (.chm) files are one of those.

If the help file doesn't open properly, try right clicking the Help file, click 'Properties' and select 'Unblock' on the 'General' tab.

That did the trick for me.
"I just drew this stupid little fish." -- Tom Hall

User avatar
Snortimer
Vortininja
Posts: 223
Joined: Wed Jul 22, 2009 8:04
Location: Toronto, Canada
Contact:

Post by Snortimer » Wed Jul 22, 2009 8:09

I've just played the first two levels, but I am really loving the music and the fun level design.

I know I have to finish playing Keen7 first, though, so I'm going to do that before I play any further (although it's pretty addictive). I think as a musician/composer myself, I'm really sensitive to good music - many of the tunes on "Krodacia" (even though I'm playing the revised version) are pretty awful for me - discordant avant-garde-sounding stuff - and it's hurting my enjoyment of the game (sorry). By contrast, the composer(s) for this one made tunes that sound good and are fun to listen to.

Ceilick
The Dude
Posts: 1538
Joined: Mon Sep 22, 2008 20:10
Location: Seattle

Post by Ceilick » Wed Jul 22, 2009 8:38

I can understand that with TKoK, neither Keenrush or I are pros and I know I for one, at the time, was just thrilled to have something there (I also kind of like the songs, but recognize the superior quality in this mod).

In any case, glad you're here, playing, and seeming to enjoy. You're part of the old community, if I'm not mistaken, and if that's the case welcome back :) Looking forward to hearing what you think on both games once you finish or get a bit further.

User avatar
Snortimer
Vortininja
Posts: 223
Joined: Wed Jul 22, 2009 8:04
Location: Toronto, Canada
Contact:

Post by Snortimer » Wed Jul 22, 2009 8:52

Ceilick wrote:In any case, glad you're here, playing, and seeming to enjoy. You're part of the old community, if I'm not mistaken, and if that's the case welcome back :) Looking forward to hearing what you think on both games once you finish or get a bit further.
Indeed. I was a prolific member from around 1998 onwards, and was even moderator for a time, but I have no idea what's been going on in these parts for the past... mm, at least five years or so, I guess. Were you around back then? I am really surprised and pleased to see that this community still exists and thrives, particularly that the fangames are only getting better. I don't think I'll be able to ever really leave Commander Keen; it caught me at an impressionable age. I'm just glad that there are still people who are keeping it alive, rather than leaving it to lie in a pool of stagnant water, which is what would happen if fans were to follow the exact letter of copyright law. Sonic and Mario were never abandoned by their creators like CC, and evolved into dynamic creations with many excellent games and worlds to their name. For Keen, that task is left to people like you. Thanks.
Member since at least 1998 with... ah... some long absences. I was even a moderator at one point. I'll probably keep coming back here and there as long as this place still exists.

Ceilick
The Dude
Posts: 1538
Joined: Mon Sep 22, 2008 20:10
Location: Seattle

Post by Ceilick » Wed Jul 22, 2009 9:45

Szemi has alerted me to two errors, one affecting hard mode and the other affecting the secret level. I've re-uploaded the game at the same address, but those of you who have downloaded already will need to redownload. Sorry for the inconvenience, but note that save game files are transferable.

Mink
Vortininja'd
Posts: 496
Joined: Sat Nov 03, 2007 16:05
Location: Providence, RI, US

Post by Mink » Wed Jul 22, 2009 12:35

I love the boss battle (and its accompanying music) along with the ending. I'm glad it's open-ended.
I think I'm going to play through the whole thing again now; it's fantastic.

I find it ironic that the ceilick replacement is the only enemy that doesn't make an appearance in the game. It's too bad you had to take it out for the ending to work.

Will we be finding out which music track is in which level?

User avatar
BrainRain
Vortininja
Posts: 49
Joined: Wed Jul 22, 2009 12:15

Post by BrainRain » Wed Jul 22, 2009 12:40

Thank you Ceilick and for the rest of the Community for making this Mod
Everything it's cool in this game, many many new ideas that fit realy well.
I played the game after it was released, tooked about 1 and a half hour to finish. Man this is the best Keen of all of them. The colors are good, the music it's awesome, secret level easy to find if you played Keen 6 and know where's the secret level. There are a lots and lots of good level and actually big ones. Enemies are cool and some of them are fun. The game Fits realy well into the Keen universe.
I found some bugs in the game like the Help file. It can be accessed only in windows, but in the game there's no option to get to it. I tried [F1] but it doesnt worked. And when you exit the game that DOS ASCII thing it's not complete, there's just the title only and the big text box it's empty.
Never mind, I still enjoyed playing it like playing The Keys of Krodacia.
I hope Ceilick you will make The Battle of the Brains, cuz I would like to know the ending of the game, and what will happen with Mortimer McMire, and how it will look like. I think it will be a Keen 5 mod i guess because Keen it's in that Green Bean with Bacon MegaRocket and he will be in the space again. Maybe i'm wrong but never mind. Oh and by the way sometimes it laggs in DOSBox the game, and the screen shakes a little bit and then everything will be ok, maybe that's a sprite or patching issue. I'm using the lates DOSBox (0.73) on top of Windows Vista 64 Bit.

Once again thanks for everybody who contributed in the project and have a nice day :)

BrainRain

Post Reply