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Re: Evil Volunteers: Parathymeter
Posted By: Mark LevinDate: 2/7/04 7:09 a.m.

In Response To: Evil Volunteers: Parathymeter (Steve Levinson)

: Parathymeter - anyone know the significance of this name? It's not in the
: dictionary and a Google search only yields Marathon Evil references. In
: any case, this level gives us our first romp around the home world of the
: Mystics.

This level is interesting in that 3 people worked on it: FM, ydnar, and Colin James. Ydnar's core architecture is stunning, as virtually the entire level is a single open space, along with the 4 towers and very long views. FM's touch comes in for the external areas and secret passages; the curvy design is (I assume deliberately) very similar to the Mystic sections of Hackers. CJ added the puzzles, and here's where the map falls down a bit due to the oxygen problems discussed in this thread and the fact that where to go isn't really clear (and often underwater) and involves a lot of backtracking.

: With skill, this path is actually your best bet

It's also a great place to take advantage of the "bug" noted on Mr. Bill: If you can funnel a large group of monsters into the narrow hallways, you can waste them all with a couple of rail shots, especially since every single monster on the level explodes when killed. This level is also the first place we see the gray Mystics; I'm not sure what the difference between them and the "minor" Mystics from previous levels is. Perhaps they have more health?

: Eventually
: you'll find yourself back at the start of the level.

Personally, I don't really like levels where the final objective is very close to the starting location; you have to run all over the place performing tasks and then go all the way back to where you were in the first place. There's little sense of making progress.

: This is an approach to mapmaking that should rarely if ever be used.

I don't think it's that bad in the general case, but it shouldn't be used for such a sprawling, open level as Exodus. It's good to prepare players for a linear, gauntlet-type level where it might not be appropriate to stick a terminal in the middle of constant combat.

One thing to note about the "main" secret in the southwest area: Some of the ammo regenerates, so dance around in front of the exit door for a bit after killing everyone (the item trigger polygon is there).

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Replies:

Evil Volunteers: ParathymeterSteve Levinson 2/6/04 5:42 p.m.
     Re: Evil Volunteers: ParathymeterDr. John Sumner 2/7/04 4:34 a.m.
           Re: Evil Volunteers: ParathymeterSteve Levinson 2/7/04 6:08 a.m.
     Re: Evil Volunteers: ParathymeterYossarian 2/7/04 6:34 a.m.
           Impressive! *NM*Steve Levinson 2/7/04 8:14 a.m.
     Re: Evil Volunteers: ParathymeterMark Levin 2/7/04 7:09 a.m.
           Re: Evil Volunteers: ParathymeterDr. John Sumner 2/7/04 7:47 a.m.

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