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Return of the Scrapbot AE contest!


Bound
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Good day!

 

I, @Scrapbot, have returned to the Everlasting server after a series of unfortunate events oddly timed with a global pandemic. With my return, I am returning to this contest!  So, if there are AE mission makers out there, add your submissions here and I will post my non-farm AE contest winners weekly! This is the return, so there might be a few hiccups. Anyhow, for those that don't know, here's the rub:

 

I take submissions for AE missions via the ingame email to @Scrapbot from the Arc's creator (1 Arc per person).

Submissions for the week are Monday to Friday giving me time to play submissions (capped at 5 a week because I'm human)

Winner is announced here on Sunday but gets winnings via ingame email (I just reply to the submission) 

Winnings are the INF gained from playing all submissions solo and an additional amount I contribute (Don't worry if you have a low level arc, the winnings still balance out over the total).

 

Basics of my grading

I set the difficulty to 0/+2 and solo each Arc on one of my level 50s (this is where the pot comes from)

When time allows or missions dictate, I will replay Arcs with a team again at 0/+2 (my part of this also get added into the pot)

Grading is after I complete the Arc so that that I can see everything the creator envisioned (some objectives or enemies may not make sense during a mission but make sense by the end of the arc)

 

Generally, how arcs are rated:

- Objectives to story (do the mandatory tasks make sense to what the POC is telling me; Why am I pummeling everyone for a B&E? Is it just excessive or is there something more sinister? Are you cleverly masking a farm?)

- Enemy group utilization (Was thought put into my enemies? Are you cleverly masking a farm?)

- Lore stuff (it doesn't have to match CoX lore, but a story needs some context even if it is self contained. i.e. Why am I fighting the enemy group FLOWER CORP?)

- The little things (some intangibles that bleed into the other fields, such as - Writing style should be on par with, or beyond, my 8 year old; Are AE mechanics incorporated to enhance the arc? Why is the super valuable do-hickey being kept in a cardboard box? etc.)

- Was it Fun (I feel this is frequently underrated; did I enjoy your arc, would I play it again? Did I want to enter into the story you created? Would I bring other people into your world with me? Was I glad to play it or just glad it is over?)

 

Caveats 

Not related to the Developer's Choice for AE - This is Scrapbot's Choice.

Difficulty is not really a factor unless it is marked solo friendly and is definitely not solo friendly.

Notes will contain: Winner Arc ID, all other submission IDs, total winnings, some of my comments.

-- I'm still trying to gauge how much of my personal comments will go on here - I want to inform, not flame, about arcs.

On team playthroughs, I will take constructive comments from my team members... but they are not Scrapbot and don't have to take heat for the final ruling.

On Saturday, I will email the contributors I will be playing to let them know they got in - so, if you didn't get an email, you submitted late and should resubmit the following Monday.

-- If I missed a submission for whatever reason, let me know and I will go back and check - if it was missed (not disqualified for being a farm) I will rate it with the following weeks submissions.

In rare cases of 1 mission existing per ID but forming 1 arc, let me know and I will rate them together as one arc but it is up to you to provide those IDs, I won't hunt for them.

Edited by Bound
I'm back, baby!
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  • Bound changed the title to Scrapbot AE contest!

Contest week 24FEB20 - 28FEB20:

 

5 entries being considered!

 

Pot Value:

Automatic value (25000 * 5) == 125,000

First Arc yield == 50,604

Second Arc Yield == 1,670,720

Third Arc Yield == 2.343,054

Fourth Arc Yield == 2,722,374

Fifth Arc Yield == 800,046

Bonus Play through(s) Yield == 495,465

 

First Place: 5,471,509

Second Place: 2,735,754

 

Results:

 

First Place: 23377 (6 Million)

Second Place: 19040  (3 Million)

Honorable Mention: 242 

All valid unranked entries will receive 25k INF for participation.

 

Contestant Entries:

 

19855 - According to its description, this arc is based off a series of comics from the early 2000s. While it has an interesting assortment of custom mobs, they lack any real development or balancing through either the mission narrative or the bio. This one needs some polish on the enemies and some work on joining the elements together. This may be one of those cases where the attempt to fit years of comics into a manageable arc cost valuable details from the lore/narrative. It says it is for teams... and it is if you want to have fun playing; Otherwise, it can get tedious at certain points.

 

242 - While it did not win, it definitely gets an honorable mention for being true to Paragon City lore and well thought out. This is a low-level (caps at 9) arc in which you fight the Hellions. The narrative was well developed, the clues moved the storyline along and fed more information into the why. Since the enemies aren't custom, they all came with bios. I would definitely say this arc fits snuggly into cannon and if I didn't know that I was using AE - it could be a regular contact in Atlas or Skyway. It fleshes out a bit more about the Hellions and gives them a little more character than the in-game arcs tend to.

 

23377 - This and 19040 were too close to call, I had to bring in a few others and get additional input to break the tie. This one won out 3v2 over 19040. This arc blends in some familiar enemies (CoT) into a story with custom enemies. While the storyline says it is about a school of magic, it is more like an introduction to this school of magic. The narrative is well-paced out and none of the missions are overly long. At no point was it unclear why I had an objective and by the end I found myself hoping to hear more about this school. The story's lore is reinforced in mob/NPC Bios, mission clues, and in tidbits of in-mission dialogue.

 

19040 This and 23377 were too close to call, I had to bring in a few others and get additional input to break the tie. If you loved the Syndicate arcs in Praetoria or wanted to reminisce  about the Shadowrunner series, this is the arc for you. The dialogue is sharp and the mobs well developed. There is a lot of variety here and a lot of Masterminds but balanced enough that solo I had no issues progressing the story solo on my stalker (lvl 50). There is a nice blend of humor in the bios and the in-mission dialogue that keep it from getting too Praetoria. The biggest issue cited when it came down to the group vote was the late arc storyline where the storyline developed a feeling akin to Shadow Runner. Only in this case, turns out you could trust one.

 

23432, 23431, 23424 - This was three single missions that went together by theme. The narrative was really lax and most the mobs and clues lacked any depth. However, let me give you the pros, as far as a crossover goes, the characters were really well designed. Powers suited the mobs well, and you could see where they drew the influence from. Sadly, that is kind of where it tapered off. Those well designed mobs that did have a bio seemed to be works in progress... or maybe really modern poetry that I didn't get. The narrative seemed to reply more on you already knowing the movies because there is really nothing in the mission briefs, contact interactions or clues. I'd call this a work-in-progress but, if you're a Star Wars fan, I still encourage you to go to check out the mob designs.

Edited by Bound
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Contest week 2MAR20 - 6MAR20:

 

4 entries being considered! 1 disqualified for being a (very poorly disguised) farm.

 

Pot Value:

Automatic value (200,000 * ??) == 800,000

First Arc yield == 2,290,730

Second Arc Yield == 1,781,008

Third Arc Yield == 1,176,944

Fourth Arc Yield == 1,137,932

Fifth Arc Yield (disqualified) == 4,800,109

 

Bonus Play through(s) Yield == 430,030

Player Donation == 106,000,000

 

Note: I increased the automatic value of the arcs from 25,000 to 200,000. Each qualifying but unranked submitter will still get 25K just for submitting. 

 

First Place: 79,000,000

Second Place: 39,400,000

 

Results:

 

First Place: 19492 (79 Million)

Second Place23674 (39.4 Million)

 

Each qualifying but unranked submitter will still get 25K just for submitting. 

 

Contestant Entries:

 

23674 - Neutral; 1 - 54; In this arc, you play a taskforce sent out to help Valkyrie with a nanite problem. Sadly, the narrative doesn't tell you what that problem is! Really, Valkyrie drives this arc, and if her narrative would've been weaker it wouldn't have scored. The primary reason this didn't make number one was the lack of in-game clues, plot, context. (Note: the creator told me that this arc is used for a RP community, and in that sense, it works perfectly. Basically, the lead your missing for the story is that infected Clockwork have started showing up Primal-side with an AI in them that's taking over any robot it comes into contact with, and sends a copy of their schematics to be duplicated.) 

 

19492 - Villain Aligned; 1 - 20; I really enjoyed this arc as a whole, and it seems to be more in-line with what I would see as a red side 'Death From Below' than the actual redside DFB. You are a potential destined one and Arachnos has set up a training lane for you in conjunction with AE Corporation. From there, things go awry. The writing is clean and the use of the PoC is interesting, ultimately you should be able to piece together what is happening by the end, if not, you get a monologue that gives it to you. (Note: I did in fact dislike the third mission, that's just me. This arc nets you all the badges by the end but mission three makes it feel obvious. I stiil lament the rescued ally spawning up to 10 levels below the mobs.)

 

12519 - Neutral; 20 - 54; This is a crossover arc into the world of Warhammer 40k. All things considered, it is hard to pull off a crossover to a universe of carnage and vice into City of Heroes. The character design was nice and the plot was decent. There are no guardsmen here but may have been more suitable to getting rescued and the contingent of dimensional Space Marines that did arrive seem to be lackluster combatants (as far as Space Marines go) getting captured rather frequently. Overall, this is a fun mission arc to play if  you and your friends have some WH40K alts you want to play out.

 

13667 - Rogue Aligned; 1 -54; Are you looking for a Super Group? Well, you need to be able to clear this clean arc first if you're hoping to be accepted into Curiosity Kilz. As a means for new recruits to get moved into the supergroup it was genius, as a regular arc it was okay. The highlight for me came in if you played through the previous week's contestants, you'll have seen the syndicate made a cameo appearance. Overall, the arc was decent but it dodn't make me want to come back and replay it... by the time I completed the first playthrough, I felt distinctly like the PoC's sidekick and not part of a cadre of ninja. 

 

Special thanks to The Bobby Llama for his charitable donation to the winnings for this week's activity!

Edited by Bound
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Contest week 9MAR20 - 13MAR20:

 

4 entries being considered!

 

Pot Value:

Automatic value (200,000 * ??) == 800,000

First Arc yield == 1,919,000

Second Arc Yield == 1,753,000 

Third Arc Yield == 1,274,000

Fourth Arc Yield == 841,792

 

 

Bonus Play through(s) Yield == 500,000

Player Donation == 4,000,000

 

First Place: 7,392,000

Second Place: 3,696,000

 

Results:

 

First Place: 23950

Second Place: 24032

 

Each qualifying but unranked submitter will still get 25K just for submitting. 

 

Contestant Entries:

 

24032 - Neutral Aligned; 43, 32, 25; Hydropathia has slept walked into trouble and needs a little help figuring out why and what came of it. In this map, you will find yourself fighting primarily Freakshow before a transition to primarily the custom mob. Uniquely, this arc has you walk backward in levels, starting you at 43 then 32 then 25... so, if you are end game oriented and have respec'd yourself to be useless below 30 - this may be a struggle for you. None of the maps are particularly large so it goes by relatively quickly. The custom mobs come in two flavors, the ones you are trying to prevent and a second one that was far more interesting to me (TempleTech). Sadly, there is no real backstory on the latter. This may be due to the RP-origins of the arc. 

 

23986 - Villainous Aligned;  54; You are being initiated into an elite group of assassins who use AE to not only initiate new Supers but also mask their activities. The mobs are decent as there are a few game mobs mixed in with a few custom. The main force are a security company who specialize in dealing with Super threats and they are decent at doing it. The story line, being a recruitment themed arc, is easy enough to follow that being light on the clues isn't a real problem. It does say solo friendly on the AE index - I question this... unless you are already built to solo custom mobs, stalker-stealth everything, or have the difficulty turned down way low. 

 

23950 - Hero Aligned; 54; This arc deals with the New Praetorians and how not everybody is happy that they're here on Earth Prime. I really liked this arc - except mish 4 (I'll come back to that) - as it talks about a very real point. Not everyone from Praetoria wants all Praetorians on Prime... to pseudo-quote the contact, some scars run deep. The narrative from the contact is decent, but despite the warning in the AE index, I found the clues light on driving the story. They more filled in nifty details that weren't really vital to the overall story. The main body of enemies are Freakshow and Resistance with a little bit of customization to add flavor. Though 5 maps long, it is very manageable since they are small-ish maps and mostly not defeat alls. Speaking of defeat alls, mish 4... it is a defeat all; It is a defeat all level locked at 54; The level 54 mobs are Resistance. If you are not slotted to handle level 54 mobs, this map may be VERY tedious for you.     

 

5870 - Vigilante Aligned; 54; The premise here is that Arachnos get their widows much like the Praetorians get their seers. This story unfolds across one mish, which makes it pretty straight forward. You go in, knock some heads, free the widow-recruits, and get out. The custom mobs (Sanctum) who kidnap girls for Arachnos are decent, not over or under whelming at 2/4. Arachnos are on the map to (presumably) receive shipment, but for some reason there is still a clock on the mish. In my play through, the final boss was in the middle of two swarms of Arachnos and a few Sanctum - it was pretty epic. 

 

 

Edited by Bound
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Contest week 16MAR20 - 20MAR20:

 

3 entries being considered!

 

Pot Value:

Automatic value (200,000 * ??) == 600,000

First Arc yield == 1,931,000

Second Arc Yield == 2,232,000

 

 

Bonus Play through(s) Yield == 329,000

Player Donation == 15,000,000

 

First Place: 13,395,000

Second Place: 6,700,000

 

Results:

 

First Place: 848
 

Second Place: 17521

 

While there were none, each qualifying but unranked submitter would still get 25K just for submitting. 

 

Contestant Entries:

 

17521:  Heroic; 1 -54; This is a return of Sanctum in a two-part story to save a duo of fox-like friends, Vulpis and Sonus. The story was pretty lax in narrative but the clue you get pretty much spells out the gist of what you're doing. Arachnos once again are receiving (presumably) data from Sanctum this time and make a cameo appearance. Why they want data, how it relates to the story, or how Sanctum was supposed to help reduce radioactivity is left unexplained. As with last week, I found the mobs to be still pretty well-balanced for custom mobs. A fun little romp of bashing orange clad baddies in large groups.

 

848: Neutral; 41- 54; So, you go to the Shadow Shard where there is a new area opened to discovery. As a team goes in, they get cut off... this is where you come in. You get to save a few Soldiers and civilians and end a feud along the way. If you like Rularuu and wished more had been developed there - here is an arc for you. According to the description, this arc was an award winner back on live... and for good reason. The narrative was strong, the text had an amazing use of coloring to identify speakers or thought, clues were meaningful with lore bits sprinkled in if you were curious. The custom mobs were integrated well with the game mobs. I don't think I would call this solo friendly, but definitely solo-able if you go slower.

 

Arc three withdrawn at player request: Sadly this player has decided to leave City of Heroes; fortunately, he told me so as to keep me from potentially giving him winnings he would never use. 

 

 

Special thanks to @Infrared Girl for their charitable donation to the winnings for this week's activity!

Edited by Bound
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Contest week 23MAR20 - 27MAR20:

 

6 entries being considered!

 

Due to the ongoing Pandemic, I have made a slight change to how I get the "Bonus play through Yield" each week will start with a bonus and then I will add play through on top of that.

 

Pot Value:

Automatic value (200,000 * 5) == 1,200,000

First Arc yield == 1,726,000

Second Arc Yield == 1,361,000

Third Arc Yield == 1,716,000

Fourth Arc Yield == 3,173,000

Fifth Arc Yield == 2,470,000

Sixth Arc Yield == 1,302,000 

 

Bonus Play through(s) Yield == 1,200,000

Player Donation == 2000

 

First Place: 9,363,000

Second Place: 4,682,000

 

Results:

 

First Place:  854
Second Place: 24425

Honorable Mention: 4412

 

Each qualifying but unranked submitter will get 25K just for submitting. 

 

Contestant Entries:

 

11731; Heroic; 1 - 54: In this arc, the Clockwork are searching for something - you don't know what and you don't know why. So, being a hero, you decide to investigate at the behest of the group Division X. The narrative from the contact gives you what you need, a starting point. The clues however, don't give you much in the first map and nothing in the second. Fortunately, the contact has all sorts of details he conveniently shares only after your leg work is done. In the end, you are directed to beat the new leader of the Clockwork, a sentient robot bent on becoming more human. Because his self made parts are so good, he has to go. Not that he's actually done anything wrong yet, they're just to good to be 'legal... or moral.' The mobs are all CoX mobs until you reach your adversary who looks like an average guy but with super powers. When all is said and done, the co-founder of Division X pats you on the head, gives you an atta boy, and tells you Division X will be watching. I'm not sure if this was a recruitment arc or if I've just been used to off a robot just 'cause. 

 

854; Heroic; 46 -52: Ever been to Mercy Island and fight those pesky snakes? Well, here is a whole arc built around them and their origins. This arc sends you through time at the behest of the Midnighters to prove (or disprove) a theory. The narrative and clues are polished as are the mixed use of custom and pre-generated mobs. It gives a studious look at potential mixes between Greek, Egyptian, and CoX mythology to give you a believable story for how snakes arrived where they did. It also leaves a little room for you to argue the knowledge of a deity and our place as temporal travellers. Everything in this map seemed to fit in nicely where it was and the finally battle was pretty epic in my play through.   

 

24618; Vigilante; 30 - 54: I really enjoyed the concept of this arc but the implementation needs work. Crey have opened a dimensional portal which has led to a 'The Mist' like situation where the alternate dimension is pouring into ours. Only, you get to clean it up. Unfortuantely, the concept needs refined in this implementation. Originally, I thought this was a fire farm reskinned into a story arc, but there is enough diversity after the first map to make it not. The narrative is lax and clues are pretty uninformative or redundant but the concept carries through regardless. There are a few EB (or AVs) that seem oddly out of place given the light on information narrative. After some TLC, this could be a fun and balanced romp. 

 

24479; Neutral; 30 - 54: You determine that something sketchy is going on at old Crey facilities. Your contact is, interestingly, a pile of evidence. Your first mission? Gather more evidence and add it to the pile! This isn't really a good or bad thing until the clues you uncover don't actually provide any meaningful clues. You encounter a relative of Crey (I assume the dead Crey, not the imposter, but the relative seems oblivious to the difference). Clovis does promise to find you later, I wasn't worried. After that, you get enough information to determine that this is an origin story! The mobs were a nice blend of Crey and Custom security that weren't overwhelming and also weren't particularly noteworthy which fits since they were just random security guards - there are a few custom mobs (Paragon Protector vein) that can get tedious if you're playing solo at a higher level.  The narrrative and clues as they are do not deliver a meaningful level of care whether or not I solved this mystery. 

 

4412; Rogue; 20 -29: In this story, you are approached by a greedy member of the warriors, and he is asking you to rob a hidden cache of goods. If the warriors were a dominant presence on the Rogue Isles, I could see this being a minor mission arc there - it does take palce over only two maps. First you are pit against an associate of the contact to get a list, now I was a little disappointed at this mission but won't go into why since I don't want to detract from it. Needless to say, it doesn't matter how that mission ends, the brisk narrative makes it a non-factor. The last mission is a bit more involved as you find a slew of characters to contend with. I think the little details in the EBs in thiis arc are amongst the best points of this story. What truly helps this arc is that you are not an incarnate when you play it, so it is less likely that you or your team will casually brush the mobs away - and instead have to actually deal with them. 

 

24425; Neutral; 50 - 50: This is a really short story which takes place over a whooping two maps. However, this story doesn't rely on a series of complex plots, elaborate custom characters, or easter egg details - it asks you a question and the answer is the story. As I said, the mobs are not the focus, you see Praetorian Devouring Earth and Clockwork as this story takes place in the aftermath of the "war" with Primal Earth. The story is to the point and delivers enough meaning that it is a bittersweet little tale that takes very little time. It is marked as a work-in-progress but I'd say it is nearly there.
 

 

Edited by Bound
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  • 2 weeks later

Contest week 30MAR20 - 03APR20:

 

2 entries being considered!

 

Awards have been sent out but I will update the mission blurb for this week after work tomorrow. No excuses, the week just got away from me!

 

Pot Value:

Automatic value (200,000 * 2) == 400,000

First Arc yield == 1,084,000

Second Arc Yield == 1,288,000

 

Bonus Play through(s) Yield == 1,130,000

Player Donation == 0

 

First Place: 2,601,000

Second Place: 1,300,000

 

Results:

 

First Place:  25869
Second Place: 14337

 

Each qualifying but unranked submitter would have got 25K just for submitting. 

 

Contestant Entries:

 

25869; Villain; 25 - 33: Arachnos has decided it is time for Croatoa to go. How? You. In this well crafted arc, you are contracted to aide the Red Caps in sending Croatoa back into the spirit world once and for all. The story is very easily handled with the optional aide of some NPCs and the dialogue drives more than the clues which is nice as I don't have to keep going back to constantly read the tidbits I may have missed. A Giant Monster does appear but it is optional if you choose to take it on. I chose too, just to test it, and with the NPC allies on the map, it is super easy.  If you are a fan of the Rogue Isles and would like to see how they manage to exist despite Paragon City - give this gem a go.

 

14337; Villain; 1 - 54, 30 - 54: This has a pretty low ranking currently, and I'm not entirely sure why - why so serious? Anyhow, it is a fun little romp through a few city maps on behalf of a questionable mayor. Mayor Bimbo puts you up against food carts and vendors as well as the food itself. Overall, it was enjoyable as a story goes but the narrative supporting that story leaves room for improvement. There were a few custom mobs but they were pretty well worked out with limited bios but that is expected since they were just food vendors. The missions are pretty straightforward and manageable solo (for my brute). The biggest hang-up came with the last mission with a few optional clickies being oddly chosen and the boss coming out pretty easy to beat.   

Edited by Bound
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Contest week 06APR20 - 10APR20:

 

2 entries being considered!

 

Pot Value:

Automatic value (200,000 * 2) == 400,000

First Arc yield == 2,610,000

Second Arc Yield == 1,448,000

 

Bonus Play through(s) Yield == 1,400,000

Player Donation == 0

 

First Place: 3,905,000

Second Place: 1,952,000

 

Results:

 

First Place:  25870
Second Place: 15232

 

Each qualifying but unranked submitter would have got 25K just for submitting. 

 

Contestant Entries:

 

25870; Villain; 25 - 34: Arachnos has had a slight issue with losing a prototype bot. Your job is to find it and return it - or at least, that is how it starts. This arc takes mid-ranged characters down a path walked by many a Rogue Island super: lackey for Arachnos. The mobs you encounter are largely NPC mobs with a few Customs which tend to come in the form of Masterminds. I do have to say, I hate their repulsion bubble. The narrative was well written and definitely a thought out plot. Clues and narrative work well together to keep the story moving. A few of the maps can get time intensive if you go them solo. 

 

15232; Heroic; 1 - 54: This was another fun story which also involved a love of ice cream. Only this time you worked for the good guys to save over 800 flavors of ice cream from an insidious 5th Column plot. There were no custom mobs but there didn't really need to be. The missions are pretty straightforward and the narrative didn't need to have mush added to it to get the point across. Of this weeks two entries, I think this was the more fun (if less meaningful) of the two stories. That said, this one did suffer a bit from the few points using customization being a little weaker.   

Edited by Bound
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Change in the Contest... due to waning interest in the contest, or maybe the pandemic, I have decided to make the contest bi-weekly.

 

Hopefully, those who make arcs will have time to refine them and the longer timeframe will encourage new people to join in. I appreciate all of your support, feedback, and arcs.

 

That is all for now!

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Contest week 13APR20 - 24APR20:

 

3 entries being considered!

 

Pot Value:

Automatic value (200,000 * 3) == 600,000

First Arc yield == 2,667,000

Second Arc Yield == 1,753,000

Third Arc Yield == 2,013,000

 

Bonus Play through(s) Yield == 2,400,000

Player Donation == 0

 

First Place: 6,288,000

Second Place: 3,144,000

 

Results:

 

First Place:  855
Second Place: 25620

 

Each qualifying but unranked submitter would have got 25K just for submitting. 

 

Contestant Entries:

 

15231; Heroic; 40 - 54, 1 - 54:  Malta has made some new bots, sadly, Malta didn't field test them enough. Now they have a problem on their hands and so do you. Technically, all the bits and pieces of this arc work and work well. Sadly, they were brought together in a format that wasn't really fun anymore by mission three. Between the size of the maps and the repeated defeat alls, this mission became very much like synapse, Dr Q, or any other number of in-game arcs where you are slogging through seemingly identical tasks. That said, there may have been some sense of accomplishment from having endured this arc's well meaning if not long winded runs except that, on the last mob, in the last mission, the NPC ally summoned a pet that pushed a minion through a wall - making it impossible to "defeat all."  

 

855; Heroic; 25-30: Have you ever wondered how the heroes of Paragon City would have handled the threat of the Cult of the Shaper? Here is your answer! I imagine that if the original redside developers sat down with the blueside and hashed out how the Strikeforce would go, this is it. The narrative is well written, the levels aren't super easy but aren't a day long defeat all, and allies are actually (mostly) useful. This could easily be ported into the main body game and need very little touching up. I dunno that there is much more to say other than I encourage people who enjoyed the Shaper arc to give this one a shot.

 

25620; Neutral; 30 -54, 1 - 54:  This 3 part story pits you largely against the Crey and helping one of their more simple-minded lab technicians finding a 'friend' he's made in the lab. The overall arc isn't bad, and it serves as an introduction to several (likely) player characters. The dialogue is heavily comic book cliché and I suspect that is intentional. In that same vein, the main antagonist of this story comes of very comic book villain where no matter how badly thrashed they are, they always come back. Most of the mobs are premade Crey and so there isn't much to them. The few customized mobs come in the form of some lab researchers and some EBs (for me) who are largely forgettable given they fill generic roles without much importance. I would have liked to seen some more customization on the first level, where you have a Captain of a ship whose group is 'captain and his crew' but has no actual crew... I, personally, don't count Crey tanks and Paragon Protectors as crew. 

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  • 4 weeks later

Good day all!

 

After an exciting stay at the hospital (not for COVID19), I have returned. I know that I owe a contest and had a few submissions, so I will get those I don't have notes on done and then post everything ASAP! 

 

Cheers,

@Bound

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Sorry to hear you were hospitalized, but glad to hear you are better!

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Try my AE Arcs: Search for @Ankylosaur for the below and more...

  • Dev's Choice:  Police vs. Aliens 2: Nictus Evictus - 50 -54 Rularularian - 41-54 | The Serpent Beyond the Horizon - 46-52  | Robolution - 25-34  |  Adventures in Wonderland - 25-54 The Genesis & Geneticists of The Coming Hamiggedon -  41-54 
  • Post-Praetoria Campaigns:  All That Glitters: Tech/Sci (12 Arcs) | All That Glimmers:  Magic (9 Arcs) | All That Glints: Nat/Mut (3 Arcs) | Arc levels progress with story from 1 - 54
  • Featured: Spycraft & Spidermen - 40-47 | Return to Faultline - 45-54 | Ninjas in The Wind - 45-54
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Contest week 22MAY20:

 

3 entries being considered! I'm making a 10 million donation since it has been so long!

 

Pot Value:

Automatic value (200,000 * 3) == 600,000

First Arc yield == 2,812,000

Second Arc Yield == 0

Third Arc Yield == 0

 

Bonus Play through(s) Yield == 0

Player Donation == 10,000,000

 

First Place: 0

Second Place: 0

 

Results:

 

First Place:  
Second Place: 

 

Each qualifying but unranked submitter would have got 25K just for submitting.

Edited by Bound
Updating INF values
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  • Bound changed the title to Return of the Scrapbot AE contest!

Good day! I edited the original post, but I wanted to post a-new to get it bumped back up from page 12.

 

I, @Scrapbot, have returned to the Everlasting server after a series of unfortunate events oddly timed with a global pandemic. With my return, I am returning to this contest!  So, if there are AE mission makers out there, add your submissions here and I will post my non-farm AE contest winners weekly! This is the return, so there might be a few hiccups. Anyhow, for those that don't know, here's the rub:

 

I take submissions for AE missions via the ingame email to @Scrapbot from the Arc's creator (1 Arc per person).

Submissions for the week are Monday to Friday giving me time to play submissions (capped at 5 a week because I'm human)

Winner is announced here on Sunday but gets winnings via ingame email (I just reply to the submission) 

Winnings are the INF gained from playing all submissions solo and an additional amount I contribute (Don't worry if you have a low level arc, the winnings still balance out over the total).

 

Basics of my grading

I set the difficulty to 0/+2 and solo each Arc on one of my level 50s (this is where the pot comes from)

When time allows or missions dictate, I will replay Arcs with a team again at 0/+2 (my part of this also get added into the pot)

Grading is after I complete the Arc so that that I can see everything the creator envisioned (some objectives or enemies may not make sense during a mission but make sense by the end of the arc)

 

Generally, how arcs are rated:

- Objectives to story (do the mandatory tasks make sense to what the POC is telling me; Why am I pummeling everyone for a B&E? Is it just excessive or is there something more sinister? Are you cleverly masking a farm?)

- Enemy group utilization (Was thought put into my enemies? Are you cleverly masking a farm?)

- Lore stuff (it doesn't have to match CoX lore, but a story needs some context even if it is self contained. i.e. Why am I fighting the enemy group FLOWER CORP?)

- The little things (some intangibles that bleed into the other fields, such as - Writing style should be on par with, or beyond, my 8 year old; Are AE mechanics incorporated to enhance the arc? Why is the super valuable do-hickey being kept in a cardboard box? etc.)

- Was it Fun (I feel this is frequently underrated; did I enjoy your arc, would I play it again? Did I want to enter into the story you created? Would I bring other people into your world with me? Was I glad to play it or just glad it is over?)

 

Caveats 

Not related to the Developer's Choice for AE - This is Scrapbot's Choice.

Difficulty is not really a factor unless it is marked solo friendly and is definitely not solo friendly.

Notes will contain: Winner Arc ID, all other submission IDs, total winnings, some of my comments.

-- I'm still trying to gauge how much of my personal comments will go on here - I want to inform, not flame, about arcs.

On team playthroughs, I will take constructive comments from my team members... but they are not Scrapbot and don't have to take heat for the final ruling.

On Saturday, I will email the contributors I will be playing to let them know they got in - so, if you didn't get an email, you submitted late and should resubmit the following Monday.

-- If I missed a submission for whatever reason, let me know and I will go back and check - if it was missed (not disqualified for being a farm) I will rate it with the following weeks submissions.

In rare cases of 1 mission existing per ID but forming 1 arc, let me know and I will rate them together as one arc but it is up to you to provide those IDs, I won't hunt for them.

-- Separately, if you'd like to test the arcs with me, just let me know. I'm an evening player in EST-USA.

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Thanks for hosting!

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Play my AE Adventures:

"On the Claw-Tipped Wings of Betrayal" #43524 **November 2021 Dev's Choice!**        "Desperate Measures in the Shadow Shard" #43103   

"The Headless Huntsman of Salamanca" #43870              "Playa Oeste: Going to California" #48501

"The Defenders of Talos" #44578 **Mission Architect Competition Winner for October 2021: REBIRTH**  

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Posted (edited)

Contest week 18MAY22:

 

(2) entries being considered! I've added in 2 million just to get things started!

 

Pot Value:

Automatic value (200,000 * 2) == 400,000

First Arc yield == 2,006,000

Second Arc Yield == 2,760,000

Third Arc Yield == 0

 

Bonus Play through(s) Yield == 1,200,000

Player Donation == 2,000,000

 

First Place: 5,570,000

Second Place: 2,768,000

 

Results:

 

First Place:  30367
Second Place: 48501

 

Each qualifying but unranked submitter would have got 25K just for submitting. 

 

Contestant Entries:

 This was a very close competition between two very well-done arcs. I highly recommend giving them both a go. Neither is overly long or a grind. Ultimately, I had to come down to the technical details to determine a winner.

 

30367; Heroic; 40 - 47:  I came to CoX when CoV launched. Back then, Longbow always seemed less than heroic to me. In modern terms, they're almost Hydra. This arc only reassured me that the Heroic counterparts to Arachnos aren't very saintly. Being commissioned to run black-ops by a paramilitary organization to commit genocide against a subspecies simply because they're originally biological weapons doesn't feel heroic. In fact the more I played this arc, the more sure I was playing a vigilante. However, that was part of what I enjoyed, it elicited a genuine response from me. The blended custom enemies with game enemies worked well and functioned with the storyline. One minor issue I encountered on the first map - if you played with the difficulty set to a large group size, it spawned mobs the same name as the targets needed to complete the map.

 

48501; Heroic; 40-54: Throughout my time on CoX, I've often wondered what took place beyond the war walls and the cities we've come to know. Well, this adventure gives a glimpse into that world. It is very much like the world you know, only full of mutant smuggling and alien tech! The point of contact adds dimension to the arc by growing warmer with you as you progress... very similar to a 90's cop drama police chief. The custom characters were well balanced though in large groups the recharge drain of psychic attacks could bog some builds down. Purely from a story and playthrough aspect, this arc is a worthwhile play! In context of this contest, this arc lost out to 30367 with the final map you encounter, where virtually no Landshark or Security Group member had background details. A separate issue is that an objective (captive release) was marked as optional but was actually mandatory.  

Edited by Bound
Final
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Welcome back! Thanks so much for bringing this back. Super generous of you to give your time and to give exposure for arcs!

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Try my AE Arcs: Search for @Ankylosaur for the below and more...

  • Dev's Choice:  Police vs. Aliens 2: Nictus Evictus - 50 -54 Rularularian - 41-54 | The Serpent Beyond the Horizon - 46-52  | Robolution - 25-34  |  Adventures in Wonderland - 25-54 The Genesis & Geneticists of The Coming Hamiggedon -  41-54 
  • Post-Praetoria Campaigns:  All That Glitters: Tech/Sci (12 Arcs) | All That Glimmers:  Magic (9 Arcs) | All That Glints: Nat/Mut (3 Arcs) | Arc levels progress with story from 1 - 54
  • Featured: Spycraft & Spidermen - 40-47 | Return to Faultline - 45-54 | Ninjas in The Wind - 45-54
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Thanks so much for playing!  I went back and fixed the issues mentioned; I forgot about the missing bios.  Escort mechanics were driving me crazy on this one.

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Play my AE Adventures:

"On the Claw-Tipped Wings of Betrayal" #43524 **November 2021 Dev's Choice!**        "Desperate Measures in the Shadow Shard" #43103   

"The Headless Huntsman of Salamanca" #43870              "Playa Oeste: Going to California" #48501

"The Defenders of Talos" #44578 **Mission Architect Competition Winner for October 2021: REBIRTH**  

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You both did great jobs - its a pleasure to run fresh content in City and find it enjoyable.  Escort missions have never been CoX strong point. It was bad in Blue, less bad in Red, almost good in Gold. I'm not sure if the improvement was related to the follow logic or wider cleaner hallways though.

 

Hope you both submit again and bring some friends!

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I have to say I'm not planning on submitting anything - I haven't written anything new in months due to work/life balance being whacked - but a BIG thanks for encouraging others to dip their toes in the AE writing pool.  That's a definite GOOD THING in my book.  Kudos.

Edited by Darmian
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AE SFMA Arcs: The Meteors (Arc id 42079) Dark Deeds in Galaxy City: Part One. (Arc id 26756) X | Dark Deeds in Galaxy City: Part Two. (Arc id 26952) | Dark Deeds in Galaxy City: Part Three. (Arc id 27233) Darker Deeds: Part One (Arc id 28374) | Darker Deeds: Part Two. (Arc id 28536) | Darker Deeds: Part Three. (Arc id 29252) | Darkest Before Dawn: Part One (Arc id 29891) |

Darkest Before Dawn: Part Two (Arc id 30210) | Darkest Before Dawn: Part Three (Arc id 30560) |

 Bridge of Forever ( Arc id 36642) | The Cassini Division (Arc id 37104) X | The House of Gaunt Saints (Arc id 37489) X | The Spark of the Blind (Arc id 40403) | Damnatio Memoriae (Arc id 41140) X  The Eve of War (Arc id 41583) X

I Sing of Arms and the Man (Arc id 42617) | Three Sisters (Arc id 43013)

(Pre War Praetorian Loyalist.  Pre War Praetorian Resistance..  Pre ITF Cimerora.  Post ITF Cimerora. X = Dev Choice/Hall of Fame )

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Thanks for the playthrough and feedback. The prize is an added boon!
 

Frankly it was this contest that got me writing arcs again several years ago - any arc exposure, reviews or feedback is a wonderful gift - thrilled you brought it back. 

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Try my AE Arcs: Search for @Ankylosaur for the below and more...

  • Dev's Choice:  Police vs. Aliens 2: Nictus Evictus - 50 -54 Rularularian - 41-54 | The Serpent Beyond the Horizon - 46-52  | Robolution - 25-34  |  Adventures in Wonderland - 25-54 The Genesis & Geneticists of The Coming Hamiggedon -  41-54 
  • Post-Praetoria Campaigns:  All That Glitters: Tech/Sci (12 Arcs) | All That Glimmers:  Magic (9 Arcs) | All That Glints: Nat/Mut (3 Arcs) | Arc levels progress with story from 1 - 54
  • Featured: Spycraft & Spidermen - 40-47 | Return to Faultline - 45-54 | Ninjas in The Wind - 45-54
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Posted (edited)

Contest week 08MAY22:

 

Just to clear up a few things:

  • Yup, I messed up the date on the last contest.
  • Yup, the contest is fully back.
  • As the contest builds steam it'll get back to weekly. However, right now I'm sticking with the every-other-weekend payout. To give me time to enjoy the arcs and hopefully lure in new contestants and their submissions. Oh, also because real life.

 

(2) entries being considered! 

 

Pot Value:

Automatic value (200,000 * 2) == 400,000

First Arc yield == 2,970,000

Second Arc Yield == 3,420,000

Third Arc Yield == 0

 

Bonus Play through(s) Yield == 2,110,000

Player Donation == (I've received several donations so I'm going to divide them between the next few contests) 50,000,000

 

First Place: 39,268,000

Second Place: 19,632,000

 

Results:

 

First Place:  43870
Second Place: 40394

 

 

 

Contestant Entries:

At first, this started out difficult to judge. Both arcs are created by seasoned builders who know how to put together a good story. The real difficulty came with the play through... the arcs had very different tones to their stories. Ultimately, what separated the arcs was the fun factor, I'll explain below.

 

40394; Vigilante; 45 - 52:  A brief conversation with the creator of this arc confirmed what the AE interface tells you... it is a mid-stream Praetorian arc that plays into a larger campaign. Those are always rough to do as stand-alones because they usually rely on the previous arcs to convey feels and necessary information. I was assured this one started as a standalone before being rolled into a campaign. In that context, narratively it does very well. Anyhow, Dark Watcher sends you to investigate some peculiar goings-on involving ninjas and, later, robots. There are appearances of some of your other Vanguard heroes but mostly you're fighting customs. This arc was very well crafted, the story was well-within the lore of greater CoX and everything had a purpose. I enjoyed the first arcs fighting Arachnos with the smattering of custom groups.  Then it wasn't almost exclusively custom groups and that is where the arc lost me on the fun factor - likely without the background of the proceeding campaign - I had a hard time caring about why I was fighting ninjas... because I wasn't. I'd burn through every 'break free' I had and still more stacks of Charm were piled on. I brought in a friend to see if maybe it was just me and she confirmed that it wasn't. So, very well thought out arc with strong narrative and mechanics but the custom group was less than amazing. I recommend either a build meant for dealing with controls, a group meant for dealing with controls, or turn that difficulty down.

 

43870; Heroic; 25-34: Washington Irving's headless horseman has found its way into American folklore and classic literature. You can see it on the big screen and in Scooby Doo cartoons. Now, you can see how the residents of Salamanca, Croatoa handle this living icon of no bad deed going unpunished. In this arc you are called in to investigate a possible headless horseman - but not everyone is convinced.  It is up to you to get to the bottom of it in a Hardy Boys (or Scooby Doo) like adventure. You primarily fight pre-built mobs in this arc (Tuatha, a few Coven, and Red Caps) so the balancing is handled as is character background. The story is a close re-telling of the original/cartoon or the movie (sans the lewd elements).  The only real misgiving I had here was that the culprit was really obvious. I would've liked a few false leads to make it more 'who-done-it' or had the guilty party hit you with a 'I would've gotten away with it too if it weren't for you meddling kids and your dog' (the CoX equivalent of this would be a Nemesis agent).  If you like something a little quirky but a little familiar, this is where you'll find it. 

Edited by Bound
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  • 2 weeks later

Thank you for playing!

Play my AE Adventures:

"On the Claw-Tipped Wings of Betrayal" #43524 **November 2021 Dev's Choice!**        "Desperate Measures in the Shadow Shard" #43103   

"The Headless Huntsman of Salamanca" #43870              "Playa Oeste: Going to California" #48501

"The Defenders of Talos" #44578 **Mission Architect Competition Winner for October 2021: REBIRTH**  

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  • 4 weeks later
Posted (edited)

Contest week 05JUN22:

 

(2) entries being considered! I've added 5 million bonus for each ranked arc because I was late by one whole rating period! Once I get back to my computer (06JUN 07JUN assuming my flight isn't delayed again), I will send out the award money to our winners! I'll update this with the final result and the narratives when I send out the awards (as is the way).

 

 

 

Pot Value:

Automatic value (200,000 * 2) == 400,000

First Arc yield == 1,990,000

Second Arc Yield == 2,100,000

Third Arc Yield == 0

 

Bonus Play through(s) Yield == 0

My Tardiness Bonus == 5,000,000 each arc

Player Donation == 50,000,000

 

First Place: 32,320,000 (+5,000,000) = 37,320,000 

Second Place: 18,160,000 (+5,000,000) = 23,160,000

 

 

Results:

 

First Place:  
Second Place: 

 

 

Contestant Entries:

Edited by Bound
Updated
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