first of all, i saw this demo as a testing grounds for your engine, which is solid. don't doubt that. issues have been mentioned here and you've put work in toward fixing them. progress has been made, and, in my opinion, promptly, which tells me you're keeping a close eye on all the "moving parts" of your engine.
my "no holds barred" opinions thus far:
AI - never should AI characters been seen facing the wrong way, appear idle for no reason, climb objects (that players can't climb) or move without purpose. this has, and will be, improved. you're on the right track so it's only a matter of time before it's dialed in. if you want a more "teamwork" oriented AI, then states such as providing cover fire (or recognizing that the player is causing a distraction that the AI can "take advantage of") should be implemented. you've got the military background so you decide how this might work
also mentioned was a difference in the female Lt's "role" and what abilities (and inabilities) she might have compared to the heavily armed/armored soldiers. this dynamic has much potential and will lend heavily toward "variety" and "fun" factors; i look forward to where this may lead.
re: armor malfunction vs death. this is your baby and i've read your opinion and decision on how this should work. it's a non-issue for me as both options can lend toward gameplay. as is, i would improve upon the "effects" of armor malfunctions. ie, what if, say, at 50% structural damage, movement is slowed or limited, for example. maybe it affects our vision or "communication" with the rest of the team somehow (ie, we cannot switch to another teammate?)? i think "death" in games gives us something to fear, and "survival" a sense of accomplishment. example: my armor gets down to 20% so i decide to hole up and lob a couple grenades to buy some time for my suit to repair itself. if i haven't kept aware of my immediate surroundings (and noted places to hide, if need be), then i deserve to be forced to stare at the ceiling for awhile. if i have, then i experience a small victory; my plan worked. i'm a better soldier now. personally, i can appreciate the armor malfunction feature over an "ah, i died but i'll respawn in 10 seconds approach". it's how you might "make it work" for the game that matters. (side note: what if AI (and player) can moved toward a downed comrade and "assist" in the armor recovery process, speeding it up, etc? you get the overall point here).
the movie intro:
needs slight tweaking. the vocals are out of sync with the typed lines. ie, "line one" (and subsequent lines) shouldn't show until she begins speaking the lines and should
be shown as soon as she begins the lines. you've had feedback on the text quality (and the stray mouse pointer being visible). once these items have been fixed, it's a fine intro (the comment on planets, graphics, etc, is rubbish).
the potential for "intense" is there. with this demo, there was little set-up, just "move to the next room, clear it. repeat". but, so much could be added. example:
room 1: we're presented with a stack of crates; of course i'm going to blow them up! say the room was a bit bigger and, as i move in cautiously to investigate, i hear chittering, causing pause and re-assessment. closer yet and the chittering grows more excited. something inside senses my presence! closer still and a box drops off the top of the stack, bursting open, freeing it's angry arachnid prisoner, my foe. i fire without hesitation, strays striking surrounding crates, releasing the full array of hidden enemies; a sign of what's to come, and a lesson: this is no "blow everything up without thought" situation.
i don't think you tried
to "tell the whole story" with the demo here. it's a "test". but, with the tools i've seen at your disposal, there are so many ways to deliver "intense".
i'm running out of time here. gotta get to work soon, but please know the potential
here is great, and you're definitely on the right path. and, by the way, if you're worried about "dull", i've got a million ideas as far as level design, storyline, etc, so if you want someone to bounce ideas off of without publicly revealing your secrets, i'm all ears and, obviously, happy to provide feedback.
Virtual Nomad @ California, USA
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