|RED Volunteers: How big's your can?|
|Posted By: Mark Levin||Date: 4/20/04 11:16 a.m.|
You've finally penetrated to the very heart of Michael's chariot, and reached some sort of critical nerve center. As far as I can tell, the idea behind this level is that the chariot, all the Metalloids, and Michael, are all part of the same system and are all connected to each other. It should be possible to disrupt all of them at once by destroying this critical nerve center. Of course, Michael is sending in everything he has to stop you.
This level is a boss fight in every sense of the word- Michael's giant, motionless head (we're nowhere near reality as we know it) watches as you race around trying to solve some puzzle while tons of enemies pound on you. Your objective is to hit a number of switches in the arena, some at ground level, some higher up, requiring you to ride platforms up to them. These switches, however, can only be toggled by the second trigger of the Reaver Omega Cannon as far as I know. Each switch shuts down one of the reactors or whatever that is feeding Michael with energy. Once all the switches are hit (try to keep track of which switches you've hit already, because it's definitely possible to un-hit them again and get confused), a final switch in the center opens; shooting it will begin Michael's and the chariot's destruction, and open a door in the north of the arena for you to escape. As you run down this hallway, the place fills with flames behind you- a very nice effect done with tiny invisible monsters who are shooting extremely inaccurate projectiles at you. Run down the very long corridor to freedom.
The final screen describes your escape from Michael's chariot, your spirit return to its anchor in reality- and your final mastery of powers at least equivalent to the dead brothers. The PX-39 crisis is over, at the cost of the planet and every human on it. As we see the player wearing an incredibly long red cape straight out of Todd McFarlane's Spawn, he returns to his original self, only now he's one of the more powerful players in the cosmic game. And, of course, the question raised earlier of whether or not the player is just a bloodthirsty killer has not been answered ;)
The "secret room" on the level is part of the 4 switch mechanism- it contains the "AND gate" that reveals the final switch when all 4 of the arena switches have been pressed. I have no idea if it's possible to open the door to it- I assume the trick Steve and John keep hinting at is to use the Reaver Rocket Glove to push through the relatively thin wall separating it from the arena? In here is a large supply of weapons (I suspect it's the complete set weapons that provide the Reaver powers), as well as 2 invisiblity and 1 invincibility powerups, and a chance to charge up. It's also possible to steal a little health here and there by using the "alternate mode" of the Reaver Fusion Mace that John mentioned- it will heal you if you run into a wall while firing, so you can just run circles around the arena slamming into walls and pillars and coming away with a bit more health each time.
There are 2 levels left in the scenario that got skipped earlier because I didn't know how to get to them. WE BE SLACKERS is a copy of what I can only assume is Ian's dorm room circa RED development, along with the scenario's credit terminal. Up from the Depths... 30 stories high... makes the player literally Godzilla, taking advantage of a shrunken texture set and tiny enemies to let you rampage through a city. Check out the map writing for props to various Bungie community personalities as well as a number of names I don't recognize.
So, what did we learn from this series? :) Some rules, conventions, and standard features in Marathon scenarios are more flexible than they appear, and breaking them can allow for very interesting situations. Conversely, some conventions both the players and map authors depend on to allow the player to jump into a new scenario without having to be instructed on how to play- and breaking these, while allowing for some nice tricks, also causes confusion and frustration that may not be worth the effect. Testing your scenario, and playing it through yourself, is of vital importance, because sometimes your testers will not know what they are missing. Also, infinitely regenerating monsters should be used with great care, if at all. Did I miss anything? :)
Now that we've seen that the scenario has some real bugs in it, and now that the original creator has given his approval, RED 1.1 is starting to look like a better and better idea. However, among all the discussion, we should keep one thing in mind: This is just RED 1.1. It's not RED II or even RED 2.0. The original purpose of this project, back when people first started kicking it around, was to fix critical bugs in the game and ameliorate some of the unnecessarily frustrating aspects that drove people away from the scenario when it was first released. Nothing more. (This should also be weighed against the fact that, really, there are very, very few people who would be interested in RED 1.1 and yet have not played RED 1.0...)
That said, here's the list of changes I would make:
That should be enough to start discussion...
|RED Volunteers: How big's your can?||Mark Levin||4/20/04 11:16 a.m.|
|Re: RED Volunteers: How big's your can?||Dr. John Sumner||4/20/04 1:35 p.m.|
|Re: RED Volunteers: How big's your can?||Mark Levin||4/20/04 2:17 p.m.|
|Re: RED Volunteers: How big's your can?||Dr. John Sumner||4/20/04 2:21 p.m.|
|Re: RED Volunteers: How big's your can?||Steve Levinson||4/20/04 5:09 p.m.|
|Re: RED Volunteers: Questions, and questions...||Ernie||4/20/04 6:57 p.m.|
|Re: RED Volunteers: How big's your can?||Dr. John Sumner||4/21/04 4:06 a.m.|
|Re: RED Volunteers: How big's your can?||Steve Levinson||4/21/04 5:30 a.m.|
|Re: RED Volunteers: How big's your can?||Dr. John Sumner||4/21/04 6:08 a.m.|
|Re: RED Volunteers: How big's your can?||Steve Levinson||4/20/04 6:54 p.m.|
|Re: RED Volunteers: How big's your can?||Mark Levin||4/20/04 9:31 p.m.|
|Re: RED Volunteers: How big's your can?||Steve Levinson||4/20/04 7:12 p.m.|
|Re: RED Volunteers: How big's your can?||Mark Levin||4/20/04 9:35 p.m.|
|Re: RED Volunteers: How big's your can?||goran||4/20/04 9:45 p.m.|
|Re: RED Volunteers: How big's your can?||Callie21V||4/21/04 5:43 p.m.|
Problems? Suggestions? Comments? Email email@example.com
Marathon's Story Forum is maintained with WebBBS 5.12.