Thoughts, Impressions, and Bugs

Pilots, this is where we want to hear from you! Tell us what you think of Proving Grounds!

Moderator: SolC Development Leads

Post Reply
D2Junkie
Posts: 3
Joined: 27 Apr 2015, 02:22

Thoughts, Impressions, and Bugs

Post by D2Junkie » 16 Apr 2016, 21:04

Hey SolC team,

Color me impressed! I really like the way the game has shaped up to be. I'll be honest, I had gotten cynical and thought this weekend would never happen, but here it is, and here I am. And I'm happy! Because it's a really solid MP game.

Positive comments: a lot. Firstly, I've heard this is in Unreal 3 engine. My suggestion is to keep it. It runs more smoothly, and arguably runs better. I play both Unreal Tournament pre-alpha and Descent: Underground, and, while there are many things the Unreal 4 engine does well, there's something... off about it. There's a lot of blur and lighting effects that make everything look really shiny and plastic-y in UT4, and it makes UT3 and - by extension SolC - look more realistic. Playing SolC next to some modern games, I really don't see the need for the team to move to UT4 - it really looks good and very modern as-is. If I'm wrong and this is actually in UT4, well then, my friends, you've been the first to make it look good. :lol:

Secondly, weapons! They feel great, and are really well balanced. I never felt like there was a weapon that was either underpowered or overpowered - I was particularly impressed with how the lasers were viable weapons and not just an emergency holdover until you nabbed something better.

Thirdly, the aiming feels really good with a mouse and keyboard. I used to play Descent for years with a joystick, and even played D3 multiplayer with it. Starting to play D:U, I got into using a decent optical mouse and a keyboard. While the best I can say is that it's usable in games like D:U and Sublevel Zero, you guys have absolutely nailed the feel and made it very responsive. Of note, I use a 4,000 dpi Logitech, so I can't comment on what it feels like on commercial-grade hardware, but I feel like any shooter, 6DOF or otherwise, really needs a good mouse anyway.

Fourthly, level design is fantastic. I love how cramped the quarters are and how many different tactical opportunities you've stuffed into each map. I liked that the open areas aren't too open and have plenty of corridors and walls to duck behind and circle around so dogfights wouldn't become tiring circle-strafe battles of attrition. Weapons and powerups are spaced appropriately, making it easy to survive and find shields and ammo following a particularly damaging encounter with an opponent.

Negative comments: One major complaint - movement speed. Actual movement - not aiming, but motion - is incredibly slow. I don't know if it's actually slower than oldschool Descent or Forsaken or D:U or Sublevel Zero or whatever, but it just feels too slow. Coupled with the relatively large spherical hitboxes, I couldn't help but feel that dodging incoming fire was all but impossible. Furthermore, I felt like trichording was less of an advantageous maneuver than it was an absolutely necessary one to cover ground effectively. I really think it probably only needs to be upped maybe 10-15%, if even that, but right now, when I fly down a corridor, I keep thinking "man, when will I get there?"

One other minor note I have is that the Dispersion gun feels a little weak in comparison to the rest, which otherwise feel pretty well-balanced. It either needs to fire slightly faster or do slightly more damage, as right now you have to be virtually point-blank and even then you have to pump several rounds - slowly and directly - into your target to get a frag.

Now for bugs!... Yeah, I encountered a few, so I thought I'd let you know.

Current rig:
Dell Inspiron i7559 laptop
15.6" FHD IPS display
Core i7 6700HQ CPU
8GB DDR3 RAM
nVidia GeForce GTX 960M 4GB VRAM
1TB 7200RPM / 8GB Cache SSHD
Windows 10 Home Edition

Bug 1: Slow FPS in frost level
In the frost level (Sorry, forgot the name), there are a number of areas that chew up FPS rates. I turned down the resolution and effects to no avail, as the other two levels run at an unflinching 60 FPS at 1080p on full detail even with lots of carnage on-screen. This just slows down to 30-40 regardless of resolution, effects settings, or what's taking place on screen. In fact, it's really hard to nail down a particular part of the level where it happens other than the outlying halls and rooms outside of the central ice cave and the main hangar, which don't seem to give me any issues. I know I'm not the only one, as another user asked about it and said he had the same issue with a desktop GeForce GTX 970 Ti, which should absolutely crush any calculation the UT3 engine could throw at it. It's certainly not unplayable, but the FPS drops do make it hard to aim effectively in those areas.

Bug 2: Game freezes in video options
In the video options, either in-game or in the main menu, changing the resolution or any graphics settings pretty much guarantees that the game soft-freeze until I either alt-tab or ctrl-alt-del out of the game to the desktop and re-enter. Even then, it occasionally gives me weird results, such as defaulting to 800x600 resolution, letterboxed in the center of the screen. I often have to go back and forth changing resolutions and settings and ctrl-alt-deleting around the desktop until it finally registers my changes.

That's all for now, but I look forward to some more games with you guys. Having a ton of fun with SolC. Thanks, everyone! :D

User avatar
MadMax1998
Site Admin
Posts: 1556
Joined: 07 Nov 2012, 13:43
Location: Berlin, Germany
Contact:

Re: Thoughts, Impressions, and Bugs

Post by MadMax1998 » 17 Apr 2016, 16:04

Thanks for the detailed feedback, and glad you're enjoying the game!
I've heard this is in Unreal 3 engine. My suggestion is to keep it.
Your main reason for this argument is how PG looks over D:U and others. We don't move to UE4 *just* for graphics (although I'm pretty sure you would agree with me once you see some UE4 screenshots from our game, that it can look jaw-droppingly good). The main reason for the switch is that UDK limits us to in-engine systems, no source code access, and we have to stick with a lot of outdated technologies -- how Steam is (poorly) integrated, how the game handles collision, and also how it might freeze up your game when you change resolutions. We have zero control over the tech part of the game, only the "game" part.

In UE4 we have FULL control over everything. Also the tools are a lot more modern and make creating a game far easier, and therefore faster too.

A UE4 game does not have to look or feel weird. It's just tech that needs to be used correctly. Also, you calling PG's look "realistic" makes me chuckle ;)
One major complaint - movement speed. Actual movement - not aiming, but motion - is incredibly slow.
Movement speeds were slower before the beta and have been increased to be faster than Descent already. Even the afterburner is faster. If you compare our game side-by-side with Descent 1 or 2, you'll see it's not slower.
Max
Sol Contingency Programming Lead
Sol Contingency Website

Whiteshark
Beta Tester
Posts: 103
Joined: 19 Oct 2014, 19:44
Contact:

Re: Thoughts, Impressions, and Bugs

Post by Whiteshark » 17 Apr 2016, 16:16

IMO the movement speed is the better than in any Descent game. Please no changes to that!

youtle
Posts: 28
Joined: 02 Jan 2015, 05:53

Re: Thoughts, Impressions, and Bugs

Post by youtle » 18 Apr 2016, 03:43

Really great and very smooth besides icebreaker which tanks my frame rate from certain angles maybe just because there is too much stuff crammed into the level. Most of the smaller rooms and corridors feel very cramped (easy to get stuck on things with the square hitbox) and don't leave much room for dodging maybe future maps could have a larger scale?
Absolutely nailed the movement, feels nice and weighty, much closer to the original descent than any other game in my opinion even overload.
I didn't think it was slow at all it just seems like everything else is really fast and hard to dodge.
Dispersion shotgun is a little underpowered, ion is just another version of the lasers I liked the old idea of a bio rifle from UT in zero gravity and concussion missiles need more time between firing or spawn with fewer of them, I only see it encouraging suicidal rocket spamming.
Haven't had a single technical issue playing in a window though I do notice it switches to a a smaller resolution before switching to the one you selected whenever you change it.

Very impressed looking forward to what you guys have planned for UE4!

User avatar
Duper
Posts: 129
Joined: 12 Apr 2013, 04:01
Location: Portland, Oregon USA
Contact:

Re: Thoughts, Impressions, and Bugs

Post by Duper » 18 Apr 2016, 04:05

My only beef is that with the Gatlin, the tracers don't line up with the muzzle flash. With a sweeping spray, or turning, the tracers will be waaaaayyy over to one side. While the shells still strike where the reticle is/was, it's a bit disorienting.

Wondering about the Devs thoughts concerning why dumbfire missiles can be fired so fast. I'm just used to the fire rate of the homing missiles. I don't think it's a bad thing or a game breaker, just curious.

Once I got my controls tweeked in, the game feels great. The looks are awesome-pure eyecandy. The only thing that holds a light to it is "The Division". That game has a CRAZY amount of detail and assets littered around the map. Go find some screenshots of the game. It's insane.

Great job guys!

That Gatlin will wreck you fast.
"The cat was Aready dead when I got there." - Curiosity

User avatar
Poxy
Beta Tester
Posts: 141
Joined: 04 Nov 2014, 22:41

Re: Thoughts, Impressions, and Bugs

Post by Poxy » 18 Apr 2016, 07:19

I'm with Duper regarding the dumbfires. I don't mind at all that they can be fired fast, but I get the feeling that they should automatically regenerate slowly, just because of how useful they are, and how vulnerable you are once you're out.

I mean, slow regeneration of missiles is for sure a weird concept, and I'm not sure I'd want it, but even so, it seems like a bit of a problem regarding how quickly you go through them, and then the long period of time during this sort of fast paced game where you're totally vulnerable.

Whiteshark
Beta Tester
Posts: 103
Joined: 19 Oct 2014, 19:44
Contact:

Re: Thoughts, Impressions, and Bugs

Post by Whiteshark » 18 Apr 2016, 09:11

BTW Dispersion is far from underpowered.

User avatar
Duper
Posts: 129
Joined: 12 Apr 2013, 04:01
Location: Portland, Oregon USA
Contact:

Re: Thoughts, Impressions, and Bugs

Post by Duper » 18 Apr 2016, 17:12

Whiteshark wrote:BTW Dispersion is far from underpowered.
I disagree. Or maybe the damage is disproportionate to the sound and recoil. I dropped a clip into someone at close range, reloaded and got 2 more shots in before I died. This happened twice in one game. I would imagine I was dealing with some lag.

btw, great addition for tracking network info in real time. I found this by accident after the fact. ^_^.
"The cat was Aready dead when I got there." - Curiosity

User avatar
MadMax1998
Site Admin
Posts: 1556
Joined: 07 Nov 2012, 13:43
Location: Berlin, Germany
Contact:

Re: Thoughts, Impressions, and Bugs

Post by MadMax1998 » 18 Apr 2016, 21:20

I do notice it switches to a a smaller resolution before switching to the one you selected whenever you change it
This is by design; the engine needs to switch resolution once to apply all settings.
the tracers don't line up with the muzzle flash
This only happens when you play as a client and the lag delays the spawning of the projectiles.
Max
Sol Contingency Programming Lead
Sol Contingency Website

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest