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Author Topic: Looking post-1.0: "Shoring up" the story  (Read 37248 times)
Nic.
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Looking post-1.0: "Shoring up" the story
« on: April 29, 2003, 09:11:00 pm »

OK, so I'll presume that the bulk of people reading this would consider themselves "fans" of the game, and that the bulk of those people would consider themselves "long-time" fans.  So I'll assume that the majority of readers have been knocking this game around for about 10 years now, and have come up with some "opinions" about it.  That said:

The stated purpose of the project up to version 1.0 is to produce a "straight port" of the 3DO version, with the exception of some neat gizmos that may have appeared in the PC version.  This means that all the plot holes, script errors, etc. are here in the short-term, but once the game reaches version 1.0, I think that the floor will be more open to some, er, fundamental changes to the game, that have the potential to make it even MORE satisfying to play.  So, if you had your way, what kinds of things would you like to see in UQM?  Note that I am referring to game events and fiction, NOT features.  There are other threads for that.  I'll try to get the ball rolling:

Things Nic Would Like To See Corrected in UQM 2.0:
  • Problem: The Earth starbase is about to run out of fuel, killing everyone aboard, when the Captain shows up in the nick of time to save them.  However, when you visit other starbases, they are doing just fine.
    Proposed Solution: A slave-shielded world, near Ophiuchi or somesuch, with a non-populated, defunct starbase (i.e., they ended up like the Earth starbase would have if the Captain had not shown up) whose exploration could possibly give another hint about where the probes came from (perhaps it came under attack from probes in a weakened state?)

  • Problem: The Zoq-Fot-Pik claim to have had all their colony worlds destroyed in the Doctrinal conflict, but all worlds in their sphere are completely unpopulated.
    Proposed solution: Worlds in Zoq-Fot-Pik space with burned-out cities on them, to back up their claims of collateral damage

  • Problem: you are told in the game that the Mrnmhrrm abandoned their homeworld to be enslaved with the Chenjesu on Procyon.  So where is the old Mrnmhrrm homeworld?
    Proposed solution: An abandoned/destroyed Mrnmhrrm homeworld, or possibly the (defunct) Mother Ark, somewhere in their old sphere of influence

  • Problem: After you give the Syreen their ships and awaken the Chmmr, they have no spheres of influence, even though they are able to (in the game) whomp on the Mycon and both Ur-Quan fleets, respectively.
    Proposed solution:Give the Syreen and Chmmr spheres of influence, and the ability to talk with their starship captains, once you give them their respective abilities to travel in space again.  The Chmmr sphere should probably look like the kind of thing that could annihilate both Ur-Quan fleets in two weeks, like the epilogue says they do.

  • Problem: why is it that only shielded worlds have starbases?  It would seem that thralls/independents would need them more than shielded worlds.
    Proposed solution: Starbases around all starfaring races' homeworlds; going to them would be functionally equivalent to visiting the homeworld itself, but would make the homeworlds look capable of space travel Smiley  No starbase around the Mycon's "special place" @ Beta Brahe, to make it a little more obvious that it's NOT their homeworld.

  • Problem: The Ur-Quan siblings have been at war for 8 years.  Shouldn't worlds in their sphere have destroyed colonies, mines, etc. to make it look like it's a war zone?
    Proposed solution: Destroyed worlds peppered throughout the "Doctrinal Conflict Zone", possibly with exploration text to make it clear that the Kzer-Za are losing.
What do you think?  Is there any plot point that has "bothered" you that you'd like to see "fixed"?  And if so, how would you suggest fixing it?
« Last Edit: May 01, 2003, 12:01:47 am by Nic. » Logged
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Re: Looking post-1.0: "Shoring up" the s
« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2003, 09:55:28 pm »

You mean no starbase around the special place.

Actually, what would a mycon starbase look like? Yikes.

I am at a loss to think of any other non-feature additions...

Oh yeah, a VUX homeworld other than the zoo planet would be good.

Same for Supox and Yehat, who if they have a homeworld I have never seen it.

Random crashed ships of other races besides Ur-Quan on other planets (no significance, perhaps placed on top of a large base metal deposit?). What are the chances that the only crash in the galaxy would be a Quan? Though this would involve a minor feature, perhaps encountering a crashed ship could give sight of the sphere of influence?
« Last Edit: April 29, 2003, 09:55:50 pm by Death_999 » Logged
Nic.
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Re: Looking post-1.0: "Shoring up" the s
« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2003, 10:18:35 pm »

Quote
You mean no starbase around the special place.

In true Soviet Revisionist fashion, I advise you to look again, because that's what I said!  Wink

Quote
Actually, what would a mycon starbase look like? Yikes.

Like all the other Hierarchy starbases, naturally.  Smiley

Quote
Oh yeah, a VUX homeworld other than the zoo planet would be good.

The VUX Homeworld is at Beta Luyten (433.3:168.7)

Quote
Same for Supox and Yehat, who if they have a homeworld I have never seen it.

Beta Librae (741.4:912.4) and Gamma Serpentis (492.3:029.4), respectively.
« Last Edit: April 29, 2003, 10:28:43 pm by Nic. » Logged
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Re: Looking post-1.0: "Shoring up" the s
« Reply #3 on: April 29, 2003, 10:37:21 pm »

I guess I never had reason to go any of those places.

Speaking of which, it would make a lot more sense if not EVERY supox captain had the Ultron, and you had to go to the homeworld to get it.
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Re: Looking post-1.0: "Shoring up" the s
« Reply #4 on: April 30, 2003, 12:07:06 am »

-Of course, this is just me talking, but how about some 'Synth that were away from Eta Vulpeculae when the Orz appeared. Not all of them could've been destroyed /captured at once. Just like the humans, there might've been a mission away to find a new planet. I know there are no files (or conversation pictures) of the Andro, but it'd be nifty. Maybe a crashed one that had enough of it's data left over to produce them at the starbase and have humans pilot them. I mean, they're near to next the same...
-Possibly some other remenants of the original brown Ur-Quan, before the Dynarri got their hands on them. Maybe near the Sylandro space, as they said they visited a bit.
-Biological remains of the Taalo. They're silicon based, so they'd probably not rot, and they could be worth tons to the Melnorme.
-If possible, the last known size of spheres of influence of the Alliance members, once you visit the starbase. It'd have to be a static map, I guess, but once you find them out, they'd start to move again.
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Re: Looking post-1.0: "Shoring up" the s
« Reply #5 on: April 30, 2003, 12:17:09 am »

I would like to add these:
1. Random Encounter in Quasispace with other ships: Arilou who dwell there,  and Umgah, Thraddash or  Ilwraths who accidently entered the portal.
2. Mouse oriented map (we're in the 21st century....)   possibly with notes (like tooltips) for planets we have information on.
3. The ability to read previous dialogs in order to recall information. ("Computer, replay my last dialog with the Orz please...")
4. Better GFX (see TimeWarp project for example).
5. An encounter with androsynth who doesn't know his race is gone... like a ship coming from a far away survay mission.
6. The arilou are NOT supposed to be happy if you bring Orz ships to their homeworld in Qspace.

These are my two cents... or half dosen... whatever....
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Re: Looking post-1.0: "Shoring up" the s
« Reply #6 on: April 30, 2003, 12:23:18 am »

-Aha, I'm not the only one that wants 'Synth back!
-A mousy map would be kind of difficult, as those stars are pretty small, unless they had  stick-points like an honest-to-God grid. Otherwise you'd have to be pretty precise on your aim.
-Yea, a log of conversations would be useful.(That way I don't have to use the stupid .txt file to look at em all! Wink)
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Re: Looking post-1.0: "Shoring up" the s
« Reply #7 on: April 30, 2003, 04:55:57 am »

Primarily, restore some of the text that was lost between PC and 3D0....some of that is important stuff they left out.

Shipboard planetary database would be nice - ie, if you visit a system, it gets an entry of what's there, and any planets/moons you visit get important data.  Just an in game log of important places would be nice.  Heck, a simple keyboard notepad in game would be nice.  Captain's log, anyone?
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Re: Looking post-1.0: "Shoring up" the s
« Reply #8 on: April 30, 2003, 07:52:13 pm »

That's what minimization and a text editor are for. Not good for fullscreen mode, I guess.

Anyway, this has been straying a lot from the plot only, no features subject.

Also, depending on what FF and PR3 intended, it may be that EVERY Androsynth MUST have been scooped up. We don't know, and for now I wouldn't feel comfortable adding it.
« Last Edit: April 30, 2003, 07:54:06 pm by Death_999 » Logged
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Re: Looking post-1.0: "Shoring up" the s
« Reply #9 on: April 30, 2003, 08:23:48 pm »

How about having the Rainbow Worlds mean more?  Why not have Fred and Paul add in a conversation like the originally intended?  Kind of like a "thanks" for everyone who worked on this port?  Heck, they could even use the two images that Yuki has on her website.  They'd work.

How about finding more percursor artifacts like you could find them in SC1?  Want to add more crew to that favorite Pkunk ship in your fleet?  Search the less visited stars for random relics.  

A cloaking device for the Flagship.  That would be slick, even if it doesn't add too much to the game Wink

Random "anomolies" in hyperspace.  Old ships that you could salvage for RU, random precursor artifacts, and as someone mentioned, ability to meet random aliens traveling in hyperspace when they are not in their sphere of influence.  Obviously, you'd run into less VUX outside their influence than inside, etc.
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Re: Looking post-1.0: "Shoring up" the s
« Reply #10 on: April 30, 2003, 09:41:48 pm »

Edit: Upon reading my original post again, I noticed that I was giving "solutions" without clarifying what the "problems" were that I was trying to solve.  I have revised the original post to be more clear, I invite everyone to read the updated version to get a clearer picture of what kind of discussion I'm trying to provoke.  Sorry if there was any confusion.

The question I originally asked, restated, was "what plot holes do you see in the existing story told by UQM, and how would you suggest closing them?"

So, going down the list of suggestions so far:
  • Re: Androsynth: You are told in the game "there are no more Androsynth, only Orz", and in the game you can find no Androsynth, only Orz.   Seems pretty consistent to me.
  • Re: brown Ur-Quan: In the game, you are told that the brown Ur-Quan were split into the green and black Ur-Quan over 20,000 years ago whilst slaves of the Dnyarri, and in the game you only meet green and black Ur-Quan.  This also seems like a fairly solid plot point.
  • Re: Taalo remains: There are any number of reasons that the Taalo would leave no remains behind, the most obvious stated in-game that the Orz are *playing* with them in *pretty space*  This sounds more like a request for a "credit cash-grab" than a description of a plot hole.
  • Re: no encounters in QuasiSpace:  I agree with this, it is odd that you never see anyone else in QuasiSpace; I'm thinking that the "spawn rate" in QuasiSpace would have to be kept rather low, however, to keep such encounters from being an impediment.  Thoughts?
  • Re: no Orz allowed:  How would you suggest correcting this?  Having all Nemesis ships in your fleet immediately destroyed upon talking with the Arilou @ Falayalaralfali?  If you do that, should the Orz attempt to reciprocate if you have any Skiffs in your fleet upon talking with them?  Most importantly, do you think that would that be any fun at all, or would it just piss people off to lose their hard-earned escort fleets?
  • Re: PC texts:  They're coming.  But I don't think there are any plot points missing from the 3DO version, they just took out some of the "flavour".  But yes, more flavour is good.  Hopefully there will be recorded dialogue to match the PC texts some day.
More on the Androsynth:  I'm going to have to call y'all out on this one: exactly what purpose would they serve in UQM?  If they are introduced as enemies, they will kick your ass eight ways 'till Sunday.  If they are introduced as allies, um, how?  They hate Earthlings more than even the VUX, and the game already has two plots involving trying to make amends with a race of critters that hate you; one successfully (Thraddash) and one unsuccessfully (VUX).  Introducing them in the single-player game would either be an enormous plot hole, or would be implausible/redundant, and the topic of this thread is about closing plot holes and implausibilities.  This completely ignores the fact that every race has a certain "quest" associated with it, and they are all (mostly) inter-dependent.  Tacking on some Androsynth would be exactly that -- tacked on -- as their "quest" would be completely superfluous.
« Last Edit: May 01, 2003, 12:26:58 am by Nic. » Logged
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Re: Looking post-1.0: "Shoring up" the s
« Reply #11 on: May 01, 2003, 02:56:02 am »

Agreed; the only suggestions that I see as what you're thinking of are your original suggestions and my idea that you have to go to the Supox homeworld to get the Ultron (though we'll have to cook up some way to lure a first-time captain there so they don't naively miss out on a vital arc).
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Re: Looking post-1.0: "Shoring up" the s
« Reply #12 on: May 01, 2003, 05:39:08 am »

Actually, the PC to 3D0 did lose a couple of quite important pieces of information - the mycon telling you about their homeworld, and they syreen telling you where Syra used to be.  The former especially makes the game hard on new folks, and players who haven't played it in a long time.
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Nic.
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Re: Looking post-1.0: "Shoring up" the s
« Reply #13 on: May 01, 2003, 06:27:20 am »

Right, but the plot is unchanged -- you still have the crazy mushroom men and the vengeful space vixens and the mad scheme to trick them into leaving their "special place" so that you may rob them blind.

The Syreen/Mycon missing lines are considered by me to be a bug in the current game; but the only way to "fix" the script with regards to the "missing" lines is to re-record all the speech for any given race so that all the samples match.  I have a friend who is a voice actor, and he has volunteered his services for this very purpose (i.e., re-recording all the Mycon dialogue), but that's a bit "too big" of a change for the 1.0 release, according to the core dev guys, so that bug is going to remain unfixed, for now at least, unless they can get Paul Reiche III to reprise his role as the insane fungus-man and read a couple of lines.
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Re: Looking post-1.0: "Shoring up" the s
« Reply #14 on: May 01, 2003, 09:28:50 am »

Syreen and Chmmr spheres of influence is a good idea. I also think there should be a Shofixti sphere that finds another habitable planet in another Gorno star. If there are no other life-sustaining planets in that cluster, change one of the lame planets to it. The conversations you can have with these should be consise and unimportant, like with the Spathi patrols after they've joined with you. The Chmmr sphere should be so huge that it envelopes the solar system, meaning that a few Chmmr guard our lovely home star near the end and maybe say slightly different things because of it.
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