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Old 06-11-2010, 02:47 AM   #1
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Default Night Train Demo ready for download!

After some mild panic, lack of sleep and even more panic... I'm glad to say that a demo is finally ready for you to see! Think of this as an early beta as there are a few things still to iron out. Any feedback you can give will be greatly appreciated as this is my very first outing as a game maker.

Download the demo here

The voice was provided by Trisha Jarman, the game engine is the rather wonderful wintermute. All graphics, design, code and music is by myself.
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Old 06-11-2010, 08:02 AM   #2
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Very nice atmosphere. The themes (trains + memories + family) are certainly intriguing and have potential. The voice actress was excellent.

The 2 puzzles were decent also, although if there were more locations to travel and details to explore I would prefer more difficult/complex ones. As it is, they work well with the one room environment.

The only element I didn't like were the little white bugs crawling all over the room in the present.
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Old 06-11-2010, 08:58 AM   #3
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Hi Ascovel - Thanks for such prompt feedback.

The first two puzzles were intended to be quite simple. one thing I hate in games is being faced with a horrible challenge too early. As the game progresses the puzzles will become more challenging.

Again, as the game progresses the environment will change, but I don't want to give away too much on how that happens.

I tend to agree with you about the particles in the present. One of the first things to change.

I will pass on your high praise to Trisha who did the voice over

Thanks for your thoughts

Paul
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Old 06-11-2010, 09:37 AM   #4
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Looks really good! *click*
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Old 06-11-2010, 09:38 PM   #5
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Love the demo and the puzzles. The atmosphere is eerie.

I wonder if you will put a subtitles option in the game for the hearing impaired. I have seen that there is an accessibility option for the visually impaired.
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Old 06-12-2010, 03:41 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by jmalofox View Post
Love the demo and the puzzles. The atmosphere is eerie.

I wonder if you will put a subtitles option in the game for the hearing impaired. I have seen that there is an accessibility option for the visually impaired.
A very good point and something that I hadn't been thinking of. Thanks for your feedback on this - of course it is something that I need to think of before a full release. You can rest assured that subtitles will be added!!

Thanks to everyone who has downloaded the game so far. You will help make the full game even better!

Paul
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Old 06-12-2010, 09:27 PM   #7
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Beautiful - love it! Transitions between time periods are nice, and I agree that the voice actress is lovely. Can't wait for the full game.
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Old 06-14-2010, 06:48 AM   #8
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I downloaded the demo yesterday without any prior knowledge of the game. I can't give any real game-play impressions because I didn't play it for long enough, but I can comment on a few things.

Firstly, I liked the actor's voice, but the delivery felt very expositional to me, like a narration, or someone telling someone else's story from a first person perspective. It didn't really feel like the person talking was in the room with me, so there was a slight disconnect there. I'm not sure if that was intentional? The dialogue was well written regardless.

I found the visual design of the game to be a big positive. Everything from the wallpaper pattern to the train posters on the wall looked very authentic. I like that you haven't went overboard with the art deco, but have just enough motifs to remind us of the period. I enjoyed the scratched overlay and I especially like the menus, being a big GUI junky.

The only reason I didn't play more was that I just don't like the first-person "slide-show" style of navigation. It feels very dated and I find it quite cumbersome and at times confusing. However, I know there is a dedicated group of people that still like it and I'm sure those people will enjoy your game a lot.

Lastly, I can't post about your game without saying that the logo (this one: http://www.xportmedia.co.uk/banners/nt_banner.gif) is missing something. Whether the font needs to be thicker to fill out the space within that green shape, or some decoration is needed for the same reason...it just looks very plain right now.

Please see this post as positive criticism. Honestly, if I thought your game was crap, I wouldn't have even bothered writing any feedback at all I think it has a lot of potential. Good luck!
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Old 06-14-2010, 11:25 AM   #9
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Hi there

First of all thanks to silent_m for your positive comments. I see from your all time favourites that we think alike on our adventure genre

Secondly thank you Orient for your lengthy feedback. There has been a few comments about the dialogue, or rather the sound treatment on it. I think there needs to be some tweaks on that to give the impression that you are hearing the thoughts of someone. Your comments only highlight the need to go back and have a look (or rather listen) at that.

The 3D was a major concern of mine having no experience of building these type of environments. Believe it or not, it's all built in After Effects using it's native 3D. A lot of the images have been treated in photoshop which has been a lengthy process with over 100 images in the demo alone.

In terms of 1st versus 3rd person, I always knew that it would divide people. There are arguments on both sides, but as a developer you have to make an artistic judgement and I felt the player needed to see through her eyes. It's not that I don't want to make 3rd person games (I have plenty of ideas for them) it's just that I wrote the original story in the first person and I wanted to reflect that in the game. Hope you understand.

The logo is based on the old British Rail signs which you can still see about the network and within museums. The font I used is close to the one that they used originally. So that's really the thinking behind the logo.

So many people have given me a lot of great idea's that the full release will be put on hold to ensure that their comments are addressed (Subtitles, sound, etc). So thank you and to everyone else who has kindly commented so far

PS Orient

Popped over to your site. Looks very interesting - Will have a read.

Paul
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Old 06-14-2010, 10:41 PM   #10
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I completely understand your concerns about 3D. A real time 3D game is not something you can just jump into and create. It's a shame, because I think first-person was the right decision, but it would've been nice to have full control over your movement and where you look - but I say that about every slide-show type adventure I play.

Thanks for checking out my site I appreciate it.
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Old 06-21-2010, 03:21 PM   #11
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UPDATE! - The demo has been updated with subtitles and a PDF Guide to help you through the first few puzzles. The new Demo is 130 mb but you can download the PDF separate from www.xportmedia.co.uk/games.html
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Old 07-04-2010, 08:38 PM   #12
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Thank you for the subtitled demo. Amazing!
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