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Arc 50791 - Building a Better (Bigger) Jump Bot


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I've been working on this for awhile, and I think it's finally in a good enough spot for some feedback. The story takes place after the events of the Ernesto Hess Task Force but before the events of Market Watch. The idea is to explain how the Sky Raiders acquired the technology necessary to build the Crimson Prototype.

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Okey doke...

 

So, work in progress. I'll try to give some decent feedback. Remember: where I offer an opinion, that's all it is. The wonky mechanical stuff, if any, is always job #1. Job #2 is making it clean textually. The other elements, like plotting, interesting NPCs and all that, well, reactions can vary. What I think is interesting others may disagree with entirely.

 

So, with that in mind.

 

Mish screen: Let's go through what I see when your arc pops up.

*I'd label it [SFMA] in your desc., to set it apart from farms. It's not mandatory but, if you check the Dev's Choice screen, you'll see a host of story missions labeled thusly. Which means anyone who plays AE looking specifically for Story-Focused arcs is going to see yours on the list.

 

*Mish title is a bit on the nose. Feel like an allusion works better. For this one, what immediately spring to mind is the old Don Henley dong Building the Perfect Beast. Your title is already a play on that, but I'd take Jump Bot out of it. It's just, like, right on the nose, which makes it less interesting, imo.

Mission ranges are a bit variable. 1-54, 30 -54 and 50-54 (likely bc it features Nem and Longbow, who have different ranges). This tells me I really need to run one of my 50s.  I'm assuming these variables occurred due to enemy selection. You can do this the way you please, but I feel like a consistent range all the way through is a better choice, if only because it emulates how actual mishes run in the game.  I'd just bite the bullet and either stick with 1-54, or range it on the upper end. Consistency is important (again, imo).

 

*Desc: Your description, which I'm assuming is also WIP, explains where the arc fits in. Goo call. However, it doesn't sell the story's essence. It doesn't hook me. When you get around to polishing, consider something like these:

image.png.f362879afd7c52e92556a3fe0032c3d1.png

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Anky gives you contact and place. Just seeing Croatoa clues me in on what I can expect. White Rabbit and title also work synergistically to encapsulate what I am offering. Short. Sweet. Effective. @Ankylosaur has a wide range of mishes, so you can get some hints by checking out his various awarded arcs (and there are lots).

 

image.png.1260863d698576d09f9e84eeefde45fa.png

image.png.334502850e0c95ec6ff95bda9968a7ab.png

Setting given (Praetoria, so if I really dig goldside, I'm in). Contact name provided. A hint at surprises (unexpected allies). Context given: where this fits in with established lore, and number in the series (#3), in case I want to play them all. @Darmian does a ton of stuff that fills in "lore cracks," so his stuff is a great guide for what you're doing. He's also won several awards.

 

image.png.ef0256258044ba77bdbb2a82bfbee9f2.png

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This is mine. Not showing as a stellar example, but rather, to show an alternative way to present a series (name/# presented up front, so searching/grouping is easy). Inciting incident is provided (a murder), and "well known suspect" would hopefully spur the player to wonder Well, who could that be? Second sentence is pretty nebulous and basic, though, so that could be done better. I'd call this a rather common and basic intro, which means it's a decent example for minimal expectations.

 

Notice all three refer to you, the player character. Sell my involvement. Make me feel like I'm in it before I've even decided to play it. Your arc ethos is villainous, so let that tone filter in there, if you can hack it. Otherwise, just make me interested in this arc that is meant to fit in with lore I'm familiar with, and takes me beyond what I know.

 

Okay, now that I've  gone on and on with that, on to the missions.

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Looking for SFMA content over multiple arcs? Search for the following under "cranebump."

Ordinary People [3 parts] Investigation of a series of thefts leads you deep into a vengeful plot that threatens all of Paragon City. Will you and Kings Row's "ordinary" heroes be able to stop it? Leviathan [5 parts] The  assassination of a local politician with national aspirations sets off a media frenzy among everyone's favorite reactionary network, NewsAnon. Among their targets? You. The Cage Series [3 parts]: The Iron Widow is back! Or...is she? Your vigilante philosophy is put to the test in this tale of shifting loyalties and outright deceit. The Port Oakes TF [2 parts] Enos Childs is calling on Villains like you to join his glorious quest to drive Arachnos out of the Rogue Isles.  The Bleed [3 parts]: Your investigation of arcane fissures in IP leads you to uncover a 100-year old secret shrouded in magic, blood, and betrayal. One Shots:  Of Guns and Asa Ronan; The Tenuous State of Grace; Garden of the Will; Gravity; The Book of Bond's; The Lost Girls; Injustice Systems; Wednesday’s Wyverns; Of ‘Dine and Men; Dark Legacy; Shadow and Silver

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image.png.8568c79598213aa380b92a661291aa79.png

Shadowy form of Rick Sterling, a L27 blaster with no fancy IOs. Why? If he can handle it, the average toon will.

 

He really believes in that statement, above, btw...:-)

 

And we're off

 

Captain Castillo! Nice choice. I mean, I hate the mf'er, but the last thing you want is "meh..."

 

TEXT NOTE: I'd go with sky blue on your Arc title. Resembles in-game mish text. Not a big deal, though. Your arc.

 

I like Castillo's text. Stays pretty true to his arrogance. I'm not sure he'd say bestest, however, without catching himself (Why, yes, 'bestest' IS the correct superlative...(ahem)). Nitpick, though. No typos!

 

Put your mish title in colored text, preferably one that matches the color of the title. Title looks bolded and large, which is the perfect way to distinguish it. 

 

I like the euphemisms: Send them my regards, i.e., kick the living shit out of them.:-)

 

Heh..funny joke on entry (dam puns)

 

Nice touch here:

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Damn right I will...:-)

 

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By the way this was just AFTER she put me on my squishy blaster back.

 

Nice dialogue clues to "G's" actual nature. Enjoyed the HAL ref.:-)

 

Wrapped up pretty easily, thanks to my Taser (stun is so nice).

 

Very clean and straightforward. Quick first mishes are nice. Gets me to dive right in.

 

M2

 

Okay, so you gave directions in the Nav before I even entered. I'm assuming the map I'm on will tell me why. Tbh, I'd rather get the info once in mish, but let's see how this plays out.

 

Oh...THAT map..

image.png.bb79e126081ba320dea881ce002ac3af.png

 

Okay I get it. But..I'd use Mission Entry Popup to give the player directions. Latest intel shows that G is located at... You're not currently using it for anything else. It will unclutter your Nav Mish Verbiage, and still push me where you want me to go.

 

Give your customs some sort of write-up. Even if it's a supposition Ex: Well, this Nemesis experiment may explain the local beef shortage

image.png.565f816166cd0d75ac04ab1adf5c8dc2.png

 

Okay I see the "DINO-SAW-ER!" has a write up. Humorous...? But also...weird...We'll see how this fits in, plot-wise.

 

(continued)

 

Edited by cranebump
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Looking for SFMA content over multiple arcs? Search for the following under "cranebump."

Ordinary People [3 parts] Investigation of a series of thefts leads you deep into a vengeful plot that threatens all of Paragon City. Will you and Kings Row's "ordinary" heroes be able to stop it? Leviathan [5 parts] The  assassination of a local politician with national aspirations sets off a media frenzy among everyone's favorite reactionary network, NewsAnon. Among their targets? You. The Cage Series [3 parts]: The Iron Widow is back! Or...is she? Your vigilante philosophy is put to the test in this tale of shifting loyalties and outright deceit. The Port Oakes TF [2 parts] Enos Childs is calling on Villains like you to join his glorious quest to drive Arachnos out of the Rogue Isles.  The Bleed [3 parts]: Your investigation of arcane fissures in IP leads you to uncover a 100-year old secret shrouded in magic, blood, and betrayal. One Shots:  Of Guns and Asa Ronan; The Tenuous State of Grace; Garden of the Will; Gravity; The Book of Bond's; The Lost Girls; Injustice Systems; Wednesday’s Wyverns; Of ‘Dine and Men; Dark Legacy; Shadow and Silver

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Okay, Mish 2 took for-EV-er, bc I couldn't easily see the cave entrance. So I cleared the outside map, then rambled around. Customs were easy...when I stunned them with grenades and such. Got raked a few times, but no deaths. I liked how I got the next clue (G don't talk, yo). 

 

Customs were well made. Interesting costumes. It doesn't feel Nemesis-like, but the tone of the arc is pretty light, so...nice change of pace.

 

M3

Formatting:

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One carriage return is sufficient.

 

And I've got to face ******* (no spoilers)? Shiiiiiit...okay, we'll see if squishy is up to it. If not, it's a reload and finish another night.

 

What the...? Why is M**** here? WHA?

 

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Both things are absolutely true, as in None and If you say so, bro.:-)

(nice touch)

 

This tells me you want to run L50-54, so if you can skew up that way with all mishes, I would.

 

Variety of foes is interesting, bc the drop chutes space them out. Good spawns.

 

So, anyway, I have a big brawl with the boss. Used Insps to make it interesting, then got canked. Bit out of my league, so will need a rerun with a 50+ I feel.

 

So, reloading...

 

Thus far:

 

*Uses some classic maps.

*Light tone. Could be a refreshing change of pace, or a put off, depending on player tastes. Always a gamble with tone, but you have to dance with whut brung ya, so...go with your natural style.

*VERY clean. Didn't find a typo.

*Some great jokes.

*Was a challenge for my itty bitty blaster. I play pretty safe and, I think, smart (unless I'm running with friends, then I screw up and cause them all sorts of pain).:-) 

 

I don't know if this is a first effort or not, but it's very well done if it is. Obviously needs a minor polish. I'm going to drag an incarnate through it the 2nd time to actually finish it.

 

Good bones! Well done.

 

Crane

Edited by cranebump
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Looking for SFMA content over multiple arcs? Search for the following under "cranebump."

Ordinary People [3 parts] Investigation of a series of thefts leads you deep into a vengeful plot that threatens all of Paragon City. Will you and Kings Row's "ordinary" heroes be able to stop it? Leviathan [5 parts] The  assassination of a local politician with national aspirations sets off a media frenzy among everyone's favorite reactionary network, NewsAnon. Among their targets? You. The Cage Series [3 parts]: The Iron Widow is back! Or...is she? Your vigilante philosophy is put to the test in this tale of shifting loyalties and outright deceit. The Port Oakes TF [2 parts] Enos Childs is calling on Villains like you to join his glorious quest to drive Arachnos out of the Rogue Isles.  The Bleed [3 parts]: Your investigation of arcane fissures in IP leads you to uncover a 100-year old secret shrouded in magic, blood, and betrayal. One Shots:  Of Guns and Asa Ronan; The Tenuous State of Grace; Garden of the Will; Gravity; The Book of Bond's; The Lost Girls; Injustice Systems; Wednesday’s Wyverns; Of ‘Dine and Men; Dark Legacy; Shadow and Silver

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Wow @cranebump! Thank you so much for the great detailed feedback!

 

For the title color I was trying to find something crimson, since it's about the origin of the Crimson Prototype.

 

I really like the Nemesis Base map, but as you experienced I think it's really hard for the player to find that cave entrance. I like your idea of providing that info on the pop-up. Do you think I should just change the map?

 

I thought all my custom critters had descriptions (I definitely wrote them!) so thanks for noticing only the dinos had them.

 

For the final mission I wanted to make the big baddie optional. Not sure if that came across clearly. I'm also struggling with the mission complete objective. I really want that map, but it doesn't have any collect object points, so I have to do either a destroy an object or protect an object. Right now it's protect an object, but I think that makes the mission likely to fail with large spawns.

 

This is my first real effort (made a one shot mission for badges a long time ago).

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n wKeep the map, for sure. I am thinking someone with a better memory will find it quicker than I did. I sort of knew where it was but for some reason I just couldn’t find the dang thing. I mean it’s not like it moves.

 

Shoot I didn’t catch that the big boss at the end was optional. I will pay more attention to it when I do my second run through. I suspect that will be this week, possibly Friday.

 

The missing description on your custom critters might’ve just been from one of them. Some of them did have them. As far as theywayghey performed, I do know that if I didn’t manage to knock down or stay on one of them that if I drew the group I had to be very careful but I think that’s kind of the way you would want things to be with customs. Shows some surgery and just enough danger. Of course, this wasn’t an incarnate I ran. Anyway, no issues with the critters in general. I just happened to catch that one of them was the default description for minions.

 

As for putting the title coloring red, that’s totally a stylistic decision. You always want to stick with your vision if you’re certain that it fits what you’re shooting for. As with any advice anyone gives you, unless it’s something to do with the mission having problems mechanically, then they’re all just suggestions and should obviously be treated as such.

 

The big thing is that, when you play your arc, it doesn’t look like it was just hacked through. Because it’s very cleanly done, there’s some attention to detail, there’s a very consistent tone all the way through, and a distinct voice and the way you present your material. If this is a first effort I think you should be proud of what you’ve got so far.

 

keep it up!

Edited by cranebump

Looking for SFMA content over multiple arcs? Search for the following under "cranebump."

Ordinary People [3 parts] Investigation of a series of thefts leads you deep into a vengeful plot that threatens all of Paragon City. Will you and Kings Row's "ordinary" heroes be able to stop it? Leviathan [5 parts] The  assassination of a local politician with national aspirations sets off a media frenzy among everyone's favorite reactionary network, NewsAnon. Among their targets? You. The Cage Series [3 parts]: The Iron Widow is back! Or...is she? Your vigilante philosophy is put to the test in this tale of shifting loyalties and outright deceit. The Port Oakes TF [2 parts] Enos Childs is calling on Villains like you to join his glorious quest to drive Arachnos out of the Rogue Isles.  The Bleed [3 parts]: Your investigation of arcane fissures in IP leads you to uncover a 100-year old secret shrouded in magic, blood, and betrayal. One Shots:  Of Guns and Asa Ronan; The Tenuous State of Grace; Garden of the Will; Gravity; The Book of Bond's; The Lost Girls; Injustice Systems; Wednesday’s Wyverns; Of ‘Dine and Men; Dark Legacy; Shadow and Silver

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I've not played this, but here's a tactic I've used on the Nem map, that may help - If you have a way to include an escort that has a destination in the cave, that helps players find it more easily. 

 

And yeah, defend objects are VERY easy to fail. They make for great set dressing if they are optional though.

Edited by Ankylosaur

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 Campaign:  The Intro is levels 1-20, the other stories fork off it in the 20's-ish to 54

All That Glitters: Intro (3 Arcs) 

All That Glimmers:  Magic (9 Arcs) | All That Glitters: Tech/Sci (9 Arcs)All That Glints: Nat/Mut (3 Arcs) 

All That Gleams: Finale (1 Arc)

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