WE'RE IN OUR ALPHA PHASE NOW!
Aw yeah! So what's left of our Main Quest as of right now is landing some Vertibirds, 1 of 5 NPC Faction Leaders disembark, they greet the player after they make their final choice at the end of our final boss fight, say goodbye to a fr-enemy, and off you go into the sunset. Our Ending Video plays, 1 of 11, and that is that, the mod is done.
We'll then swing back to the beginning, where we have a not-insignificant list of things to do:
THIS IS WHERE MORE TEAM MATES WOULD BE NICE! :p
Developing a mod with just 2 principal members means that the lead devs are also the janitors. We have to make our own fixes and revisions, so, if you wanted to ask for a "release date when?"
Well, here is the task list:
- Adding this new animation from Ashura:
- Gotta turn the initial stats at the beginning of the mod into something sensible for the duration of the mod, making an eventual handshake with New Vegas at ~level 9 - 11.
- Fix the Overseer Announcement voice. Currently his mouth is a loudspeaker on his 2nd greeting! XD Hi, Overseer, how are -- "CONGRATULATIONS TO THE PATRIOTS ON, YET ANOTHER WIN"
- Adding Mark the Security Guard to Part 1. If you punch someone he can arrest you. You get 1 warning. No more beating people up in Vault 18! You go straight to jail. (maybe, we will probably leave this out for now just because we have no audio for it from Johnny or Chevy, other than "where have you been?" Uh, I was incapacitated... "No shit. You were tazed by a cop and tossed in jail."
- Adding Mark to the Chapter 1 start. Now that the dream is gone, we should also make Earnest shut up. Been listening to his shit for 5 years! Can it, nerd! Let the adults talk! Maybe he becomes a Wild Wasteland event? You can greet him after the fight as normal, it just starts with Mark's OOC instead of Earnest's Force Greeting.
- Fixing the hostility of the Patriots if you are also a Patriot. We'll make the faction loyalty of the player hallways faction neutral, so no one upstairs has any idea what is going on downstairs. That way if you talk to a Patriot they'll send you to Bragg & Chevy. If you are not they ignore you. Same with Vault security. They just ignore you. If you talk to them they send you to safety in the Upper Apartments. Bragg and Chevy that way ALWAYS greet the player, regardless of combat, giving them an alternate route of play. And they can capture you to start the Johnny path, or, Bragg can rope you into the Patriots, or attack you.
- After the Hydroponics Lab battle, the V-Sec need to immediately get into the Atrium after talking to Evanson and fight bad guys and run to the Gym to free the trapped citizens as they burn. Then we're good to go again.
- Make sure the player can't escape Vault 18 early, like a coward. I WOULD actually be okay with a COWARD path option, and Dr. Rossman can do that for you technically, since he has dialogue options for that. But it's lame.
And that's it for Vault 18! It's done.
We need to add the Enclave Player Path to the entire mod now, which isn't hard, just a matter of timing the greetings and radio calls you get at each major quest objective. We need the player to get the call where they can reasonably get to a private place and report on their progress to the Colonel.
That stuff is mostly just BETA fixing.
It's The REST of the mod after Pinehaven and Lost Roads that is going to need the most TLC. That has not enjoyed the benefit of 5 years of playtesting and refinement. That's the "new" part of the mod that almost no one has played outside of a few people who are working on the mod.
Our goal during ALPHA is to just get it all playable. That's priority 1.
For that end, we need to go back and make the most adjustments to the raider path, I think. MQ01 has some mildly wonky elements.
- Mevil greets you after you fall down after hitting the net. (The Net needs some extra art.) He needs to chill out and his dialogue exit needs to be re-prioritized so you can leave conversation so he doen't just have a Charisma option (failing it he may become hostile) as his only exit option. That option, however, need to pop up if you greet him again, which requires a new quest stage for him to handle it.
- We need that Voiceless Child vender down below. They have dialogue, but are neither placed nor implemented.
- Mandrake's whispers need to be re-timed. The last two need to be after the big bad is dead.
- Voiceless need to chill out after the big bad is dead. They need to do something other than pool in a teeming spawning ball at the base of the elevator.
- In Mandrake & Voiceless are attacking Elsdragon, he needs a way to escape and not die. Maybe he gets knocked unconscious and falls into the canyon?
- Fix the companion greetings. They need to be able to greet the player and tell them about how to escape. Ben especially. Jamie and Eric are 1 liners.
- Wilson Wilco needs to spawn regardless of what went down, and greet the player.
- We need to think about how the player escapes. I need to do some level design revisions, since Stealth is bullshit in this game and never works, and combat is insane. Right now the player just kinda, waltzes up this platform, saunters over to an idling Vertibird, and nobody says a word until the Black Vulture stops them to ask what this slave is doing up here. XD They can lockpick him, but stealth is bullshit, kill him, which is tough at a baby level 6 or 7, or obey his command to go away (at which point they can literally walk off the map because there's no gate stopping them, and the Raider start shooting this runaway slave. Which is kinda cool, because if the player manages to run away through this wall of hostile level 10 raiders, they can bail out and start the NCR quest (but their companions all die.) Otherwise completing the quest THE RIGHT WAY™ sends them on a cool path towards freedom where their companions live if they can barter with the resident slave buyer.
- If they bail out their companions and flee to the idling Vertibird (as presumably the Voiceless and Mandrake attack the Raiders) then the companions and player must navigate the maze of the mine and reach the idling vertibird on the far side of the mine. But what about Noss's bird? Can't they take his instead? (And they'd kill him, again, presumably. So meeting him at I-15 an killing him again becomes kinda awkward.)
- This is for MQ02 -- but it's also part of number 8. If the player joins Noss's war part and lands on the I-15, they need more Raiders attacking the NCR in a Soviet style "we have more bodies than you have bullets" rush forward. Otherwise the baby level 8ish player is left to charge up action alley alone and face down 20 or so NCR troopers armed and armoured to the teeth.
- The same is true for Ranger Vargas. She's a Veteran Desert Ranger, she's kindof a badass! And because her healthis so high for NCRMQ01, the player is left to stand there shooting her (holding down left mouse, rinse & repeat.) if they aren't engaging her in conversation as part of the escape path.
- The Raider Power Plant quest is flawless.
- The Xiabula quest is not. We need some anti-player activity at Xiabula's main entrance, and then for O'oga to interrupt the action with his force greet call for peace. Easy.
- Need to address The Peaceful path where the Gatekeeper greets the Raider player and leads him to O'oga.
- Ben needs tribal gear and to greet the player as hostile Ben, with his companion options. Also peaceful leading to O'oga.
So that taps out the Raider notes we need to address there. The NCR MQ01, just like Raider MQ02, needs a Nerd option to solve the combat problem at I-15. I'm thinking maybe the NCR have a "Static Robot with a Canon" the player can hack and repair, and it launches a Fat Man barrage against the bunker, solving their problem. I can set a pair of BOOMERS artillery pieces on its shoulders, and a terminal on its backside. They fire and boom. Problem solved.
- Same is true at The Power Relay. Nerds can use the Laptops to turn on the Turrets and they clean house (or, help, at least.) They are currently always active and hostile to Hassan & co. Everything else here is perfect.
- On the Raider MQ01 ending, Jarl Coriolis needs to not spawn until later. His being there during MQ02's end is valid though, he just needs his greeting stage fixed. He currently opens his MQ03 Key Acquired dialogue too early and starts a later stage, breaking the progression on his initial hello.
- For MQ03, at Daggerpoint, if the player skipped ahead, the Caravans should spawn at the main gate outside the city, so they can *run* to the next objective and get ambushed by their respective enemy, Raider or NCR, before reaching the doors. That way Jameson's urgency makes sense, and we don't miss out on that dialogue. The long walk to Daggerpoint is awkward, but we won't mess with it. We can have Jameson and crew's walk speed restored to vanilla.
- I need to add dialogue to the Gatekeeper to make that encounter make sense. I'll fix it.
- After the Gatekeeper the spawn rate needs to be 10x higher. The spawns should chase the player out of Daggerpoint City and begin to spawn in the Valley around it.
- MQ04's start on the NCR side needs Wilson, Kieva, and Co to spawn correctly. Currently they do not. On the Raider side we are doing pretty good.
I'll stop here for now, since past MQ04 we get spoilers. :D But there are just enough issues in MQ04 and we haven't even playtested 05, because we just now finished it! XD
BUT, once these issues turn GREEN, we are in BETA, and a Public BETA will be right around the corner!
We have yet to put a time estimate one this list. But after this list is done we can release that information and gear up for Public BETA 200.
I spent the last 26 straight days working on our ending videos for about 6-8 hours every day, at least. Usually in the evening around other obligations. And they are fan-fucking-tastic. They really rewards player for getting to the end, and with 11 unique ending, all of which are part of 5 unique branches in the plot that are quite unique to each other, they are a great treat to see after all that replaying.
They all start roughly the same, and end the same, and share elements here and there, but they are all radically different stories.
Here is a selection of the different environment TrickyVein, Jack, and I put together over the last month.
And that's just to scratch the surface. :D
How all of this fits together I'll leave up to your wild speculation! But soon, you will speculate no more, as you can just play the damn thing. :D
You can read more about our progress on the Design Documents Found Here. In the mean time, you can keep track of us on ModDB, Fallout Nexus, or Facebook. We've got a thriving online community centered around each one.
You can also throw dollars at me on Pay-Pal so I don't starve to death at my desk: Nexusmods.com