Tour of Duty: Rock the Boat
Posted By: MartinDate: 11/16/15 5:38 p.m.

Tempus Irae
Rock the Boat

Okay so we ended up deciding to combine our efforts, and so I will embed bits of Viking’s work within my own, and sometimes include my comments in brackets :).

Last time on Tour of Duty we explored a castle complete with watchtowers, drawbridges, tiled floor halls, arches, courtyards, and of course Pfhor. I did go back and manage to get into the pretty room with the secret terminal, and it was a little bit anticlimactic, but still a nice achievement, from those days before we had “achievements” :). Our repository room terminal told us that the Pfhor were on a boat, and not with the purest of motives, so we’ve come to sink it!

This is probably the level with the best use of layered polygons. (I think The Hard Stuff Rules… might still hold sway there.) We start on the ship’s deck, and we were already told by the S’pht that we would have no sealegs syndrome, and the boat feels perfectly motionless. A good excuse for the mapper to not put in a ridiculous amount of effort to make all the polygons behave with the motion that liquids have. Seriously, I think this would be possible and totally kick Pfhor headflaps if someone felt arsed to do it.

Just as the S’pht implied by asking us to sink it, there is nobody aboard except the Pfhor, and the door to the lower decks is locked. We must first climb to the bridge and hit a switch to open it. This level plays a lot like other TI ones, with switches that open doors in other places, except we’re in a very compressed space and the map is rather useless. I’ve reinstalled since last writing – reverted my Surface Pro 2 to Windows 8 because 10 is just bad on a tablet; in fact I’m pretty sure it’s bad overall, where 8 is just excellent. Anyway, the effects are that I carelessly lost my saves, and also lost that show all polygons plugin, which was mainly for these writeups before Hopper came through with all the maps one could ever want on lhowon.org. To celebrate, here’s the map -before- it becomes useless, kind of like I did for The Hard Stuff Rules… years ago. Oh and I also worked out how to get pictures in from OneDrive better!

That’s me standing by the first switch we come to, just inside the structure, after we deal with a few Hunters, Fighters, and Troopers both outside and in. A staircase leads up to get us in there on one side, and then the adventure begins. The result of that first switch takes a bit of finding, as we actually have to come back out on deck again, and then it turns out we’re definitely on a submarine here! Let's have a look at the whole map. It really is just not -quite- aligned straight.

The 3D one is kind of cool especially for the mast at the top-left, which explains those weird extra polygons in the 2D version.

Back to exploring, the first room we descend to has a Pattern Buffer, smaller than normal lacking the portrait component, but it still does the job. Viking suggests perhaps we are supposed to think of this more as something that might actually be on the wall in a ship – navigator’s notes or a public message board, to hold up the suspension of disbelief … or whatever you might find in a 16th Century ship.

In the next room we hit a switch that reveals a key that we just can’t get to right now – what kind of ship is designed like this!?

Down the next corridor we -can- access, we find the door that is looking for that key, and then I at least get a bit confused. The posts that come down through these rooms in a nice touch of structural reality (Viking also remarked on the very realistic architecture with support beams) can make it hard to spot the rather narrow corridors that are on offer to us. Here there is another locked door and then such a narrow opening, also camouflaged by the fact that this whole place is in wooden textures! Despite what I said earlier, the map can at least reveal some of those hidden corridors.

See, easy to miss - not the obvious one, but the one that is only discernable by the change in the ceiling level! Down this one is another switch, for the locked door I most recently mentioned. It takes us down to what every boat really should have, a hall with a tiled floor and a pool in the middle … packed with Pfhor! At least they’re all sitting there waiting; this level does also continue the TI tradition of ambush by Pfhor. There is also an easy to miss terminal in the wall, next to another thing that all wooden boats should have, a candle! And there are quite a few on this one!

Viking: The fact they are still burning suggests rather recent abandonment of this vessel, but where are all the dead bodies? Did the Pfhor simply throw them overboard? Or are they still on a slave-trading kick, and beamed them all up to their own ship? Surely that wouldn’t cause any weird anomalies in the future! Hey, back in M1 they had to transport BoBs on vessels back to their own ship, so they didn’t have teleporters that go that far in range, and their own range of teleportation still seemed to be fairly limited to short distances in M2 and even Infinity if you scrutinise the story (and boy do we do that!). They couldn’t just beam Pfhor onto Durandal’s ship until it crashed on the moon, for instance. Here, they have teleporters powerful enough to warp from orbit to planetside? Did I just find a plot hole? Huh? Maybe Tycho gave them some upgrades.

Also this tiled room extends beyond the where the ship’s starboard wall should be … shenanigans with the design again!

Martin: Oh yeah the terminal. It’s pretty special, especially for how easy to miss it is, and it rather speaks for itself. The lhowon.org map actually suggests this is two terminals? But it doesn't seem to provide them there, perhaps for lack of text?

So, kind of scary to start with, given that it looks like it’s written in blood … maybe that of whoever crewed this boat? Then there’s the fact that this Pfhor has learnt English, that’s definitely news, and what? I guess the next manuscript is not here then … or no longer here? Are the Pfhor really just making this an extended treasure hunt? Our Princess is in another Castle? Oh well, not much we can do, as ever. Viking writes “We’re in Tycho’s insane care now”. Nice.

In the far corner of this room is a rather subtle lift, another map consultation, yes I know, I didn’t give it nearly enough credit! And how exactly does this work? Anyway, the lift takes us up to that key we were after, along with a mean Hunter, and Viking notes also a flashlight, which the Pfhor must have brought, because y’know, 16th Century. Anyway, now we backtrack to the key door.

One slightly uneventful room ends in a big dropoff – we get a Pattern Buffer at this point, the full version with the face … I guess we left our suspenders of disbelief in our other pants. And now it’s onwards to the last section of the level. Right here we’re on a path with narrow water channels to the left and right. The ceiling is higher than we might expect, and the Pfhor that beam in seem to come from above.

A switch in a little alcove room to the left opens a door to the right, but that doesn’t seem to lead anywhere interesting. The next room has one switch, and another just beyond down some stairs has two more. It also holds a secret room behind one of those innocuous looking shelves in the wall. Therein are two panels in the wall facing back in, one with a 2x recharge canister, and the other with an invincibility powerup!

Together those three switches at the end: close off the path back out of this area (so we don’t get any ideas of swimming back), open the exit teleporter (in the room we just opened with the alcove switch), and start the boat filling with water. They were quite kind not leaving us with much scope for panicked running around while running out of oxygen really! And that ends a rather short writeup, as the Pfhor continue to play with us – we’re off to the theatre!

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Pre-2004 Posts


Tour of Duty: Rock the BoatMartin 11/16/15 5:38 p.m.
     Re: Tour of Duty: Rock the BoatMartin 11/16/15 5:40 p.m.
     Re: Tour of Duty: Rock the BoatGeneral-RADIX 11/17/15 12:58 a.m.
           Re: Tour of Duty: Rock the BoatVikingBoyBilly 11/17/15 4:24 a.m.
     Re: Tour of Duty: Rock the BoatVikingBoyBilly 11/17/15 4:26 a.m.
     Re: Tour of Duty: Rock the BoatHokuto 11/17/15 8:53 a.m.
     Re: Tour of Duty: Rock the BoatMartin 11/17/15 12:03 p.m.
     Re: Tour of Duty: Rock the BoatMartin 11/17/15 12:14 p.m.
           It still doesn't work *NM*VikingBoyBilly 11/17/15 1:30 p.m.
                 Re: It still doesn't workMartin 11/17/15 2:35 p.m.
                       Just use IMGUR *NM*VikingBoyBilly 11/17/15 5:24 p.m.
                             This *NM*Bob-B-Q 11/18/15 10:56 a.m.
                                   Re: ThisMartin 11/18/15 12:47 p.m.

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Pre-2004 Posts



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