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 My thoughts on PostNuke changes over years (Review)

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xxFalconArasxx

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PostSubject: My thoughts on PostNuke changes over years (Review)   Thu Oct 08, 2015 4:38 am

As some of you (or none of you) may already know, I have played PostNukeRP since 2012, back when it was only the TBU Server.  A year later I bumped into Frostburnt Foundation's enhanced version of PostNukeRP, and have fallen in love with it's wowing level of content, player customizability, world immersion, and emphasis on "Roleplay". The TBU Server still exists, but it's been largely inactive; pretty much dead at this point. I have stuck with this server that Bizzclaw and Nightmare provided us for quite a while, but then ceased playing Garry's Mod multiplayer for more than a year. This was mostly due to my transition period between High School and College, and so I had put my education first on the line so I can earn my scholarships, but I was also absent due to some personal reasons regarding a terminally ill family member.


I want to discuss some of my thoughts on this server's changes, as well as some things that did not change but I feel could use some alteration. Maybe share some pros, cons, and make a few suggestions along the way. Think of it as a review in which I praise and criticize the subject, or maybe more like a first impression considering the fact I haven't really been on for such a long time. Now I have only been on for like almost 2 weeks at this point since my return to this server, so I can't really cover everything, and I will probably make a lot of unfair misjudgments. I dedicate these thoughts to the Foundation community, and more directly towards Bizzclaw. So I want to start off saying that I am wowed by how much has changed since I last played this server. Much of the vanilla Half Life 2 assets have been phased out and replaced by other game assets (particularly from the Fallout franchise) as well as some completely custom made content. There were many old players that I remember being very active on this server at one point, but I have noticed that many past players seem to be absent in the time span I have been playing, like Bestegold, Bacon, Opsan, Jeff Belinger, Tanuki, ValidTarget, Alaska, Mushroom, Baracus, and of course FUBAR! Did FUBAR get banned again? If he did get banned, then I have to admit to being surprised by the lack of #freefubar2015 protests or something like that (LOL). Anyway, I did notice a lot of people changed their names for the purpose of role playing, so I may have simply failed to notice some of the old players, and they could have slipped right past my nose. If one you said players is still active, please do correct me.


One new feature on this server is the player customization system. Instead of choosing a player model, you can, too a certain extant, create your own character, without the need to use PAC3. A nice noob friendly way to personalize yourself. You can choose two races (human or ghoul), two sexes (male or female), a couple of clothing styles, and you have a moderate variety of hair and beard styles to choose from. I assume this works via body grouping. Customization does seem limited though, but most of it is understandable considering the limitations of Gmod (like the inability to sculpt your face), but some things such as the character always being Caucasian with no African or Asian option can be really annoying for some players, and it can make players feel very alienated if they were looking to play as a different ethnicity. Thankfully PAC3 is still present, which is always nice to see, but this time it requires an item known as a PAC Projector, so you will have to earn the privilege to further customize your character by collecting resources (sounds good to me). I do hope PAC3 will never be removed though, despite the fools who try to abuse it. But anyway, I have some mixed feelings about the new customizable player models though. One part of me thinks that we can now get some new immersive animations (such as varied weapon poses, healing animations, etc), and new options for customization are also possible (such as being able to use any armor set from Fallout 3 and its mods); but another part of me knows that this means all vanilla animations will no longer work with these (such as the fun and handy Act commands that came with Gmod 13), and PAC3 is just more difficult for me utilize on the new player models.


The loot system seems to work just fine. I haven't seen an item that is too plentiful or too rare. Scavenging is fairly basic, but quite functional. Look for broken up and partially buried cars, engines, dumpsters, barrels, televisions, etc; press e; and acquire some scrap, small parts, or chemicals. Each resource has its crafting uses. Scrap tends to be a bit more plentiful than small parts and chemicals, but it is also the most necessary resource to have, since almost everything requires at least some scrap to craft. Something I did feel was lacking is that resources still do not tend to spawn with in indoor locations. I never felt motivated to search a house, because nothing ever seems to spawn in them. Sometimes, resources can spawn in larger structures, but they still never seem to spawn on upper or lower levels of said structures. Resource deposits can also be hard to notice, due to the fact some maps have props that look identical to the deposits.


Enemies function fairly well. I like how some enemies have special attacks, and the blocking mechanic actually adds some skill and tactics to melee fights. Maybe the enemies could use a little less tracking, but that is probably my Dark Souls instinct talking. I even encountered these Draugr like enemies that are immune to firearms, but susceptible to melee (a very interesting opponent). I cannot say that the AI is superb, but enemies do have surprisingly good pathfinding, which I have to say, "color me impressed". There are a lot of networking issues in the server though, and this can mess up enemy functionality, but this is usually a result of having a lot of players, or just having someone on the server with terrible Internet connection. The XP system is a little disorganized. Some more difficult enemies like Feral Ghoul Reavers, Glowing Ones, and Cazadors only give the player a measly 2 XP. Some easy enemies give a lot more such as Mirelurk Hunters (10 XP) and Feral Ghoul Roamers (8 XP). I also think there should be some ways to earn XP outside of combat so Engineers, Scientists, and Cultivators have more efficient ways to level up.


Classes are pretty well balanced, and have almost always been for the most part. Players have an incentive to try almost all of them out. The Wastelander is the tanky combat focused class. Lots of health and versatility, but slow, and possesses few crafting options. The Scavenger is the agile treasure hunting class (kind of the Wastelander's opposite). Bonus salvaging capabilities and greater mobility, but low health, and low versatility. The Engineer is the utilitarian business class. Most trading and basic crafting is performed by them. The Scientist is the medical and technological class. Most medicine and complex crafting is performed by them. The Cultivator is your main food supplier. They can keep your hunger and thirst satisfied before you go out exploring the wastes. Most classes are balanced and quite useful, but I do feel that the Cultivator isn't useful enough. Things like the server making all forms of uncooked food irradiated was intended to make the cultivator more useful, but then we get the Ghoul race option (which is pretty much immune to radiation), and the very low cost of RadAways from the fairly common Scientists, which hinders the usefulness of the Cultivator. The flamer was also added for Cultivators, but it just seems out of place for this class, and is outpaced by most heavy weapons. In the few days I have spent so far, I usually see like 1 or 2 Cultivators at a time on this server, and a lot of times they don't really bother setting up any businesses to aid other players. I have a few ideas that could probably fix this.
Suggestions for Cultivator:
 


A small problem I kind of have with the server in it's current state is that it feels like this server is trying too hard to be Fallout in my honest opinion. I like the decreased reliance on the Half Life 2 content, but I am kind of convinced that the Fallout content is a little too much in just the same way as Half Life 2 was previously too much. You even renamed it Fallout Decay just recently! Why!? This is going to severely affect our role playing freedom, because we now have to abide to Fallout lore. I know that this server had its own lore / backstory which involved a series of nuclear and meteorological disasters leading up to the events of the game, and it also had this significance behind an element known as Savium, as well as this mysterious Conglomerate Force. Looking at the wiki now, you can easily tell that this story is not supposed to be related to Fallout (I don't see this shared universe concept anywhere). There is no doubt that the Frostburnt community wanted PostNukeRP to have its own identity at one point, but this over reliance on the Fallout style shatters my suspension of disbelief of the PostNuke story. We even have bottle caps, which is completely unnecessary, since we already have 3 types of currencies that worked just fine for the game thus far. I understand that custom assets are hard to produce, but maybe you can mix them up a little by using a wider variety of other games. Use some resources from STALKER, Metro 2033, or Left 4 Dead (I know there is a lot workshop content related to these games). Perhaps use some assets from Fallout mods / addons rather than the base game. Just don't make attempts to integrate the Fallout story in this. This is PostNukeRP! I have nothing against the Fallout franchise, in fact if you made this too much like STALKER, and even renamed it STALKER Decay, then I'm sure the same issue would occur as well. It's just that if I wanted to play Fallout, then I will play the actual Fallout games. I'm already starting to see a lot of controversy because of this. A poll shows that literally half of the community is really bothered by this change. In my opinion, PostNukeRP should have its own identity as it always did.


So anyway, I hope you all enjoyed all the bullshit that spewed out of my mouth. Some of you probably did not read up to this part and went tl;dr on me. If you did in fact read this, props to you!


Ok now! With all seriousness, I really love this server, and most of the changes I find to be improvements actually. And please criticize me as well. My thoughts are open to interpretation. But do respect my thoughts as well. This essay of a post literally took me 4 hours to type! I don't want it to come out meaningless. Thank goodness I get some extra R&R time now that I am finally in college, although I suspect that I will go back to being MIA once testing comes up. Many thanks to the community for making this server grow into what it is today. Thank you Bizzclaw and let us not forget to thank Nightmare of course (I cannot believe how many people seem to forget his contributions to this server). Without all of you, we would be stuck with the obsolete TBU server, which is by no means a bad server! After all, TBU did kind of make Frostburnt Foundation happen, so let us thank TBU (despite our rivalry with them) for the PostNukeRP gamemode that allowed this to happen.


I give this server a 7.8/10 "Too much radiation". Ok! I am just joking now. I cannot really rate this, but I can say it is a gem of Garry's Mod. That's for sure!

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StormySunrise

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PostSubject: Re: My thoughts on PostNuke changes over years (Review)   Thu Oct 08, 2015 7:33 am

Yeah it sure has come a long way, I've played since the end of accelgaming, with the real sci-fi hud and everything.

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PostSubject: Re: My thoughts on PostNuke changes over years (Review)   Thu Oct 08, 2015 8:15 am

Same here Stormy... it sure as hell came a long way. Accel gaming and I remember Cyborgs Cant Cry
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PostSubject: Re: My thoughts on PostNuke changes over years (Review)   Thu Oct 08, 2015 9:20 am

I'm not sure if I have to really actually say this -- but if it isn't clear with the name change already.

The change was purposeful. It was meant to be more like Fallout, and lean in that direction. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

I suppose you could play a Fallout game, but not really a multiplayer one. I'unno.

I'm not in favor or against this change. I found the old lore cringy, but that's coming from someone who very rarely plays, so take that sentence with a grain of salt.

Regardless -- I suppose content from different games would be cool to see if PNRP were to follow an older vision. I kind've wonder if a legacy server one day might be a good idea.
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PostSubject: Re: My thoughts on PostNuke changes over years (Review)   Thu Oct 08, 2015 2:07 pm

Aesop wrote:
I'm not sure if I have to really actually say this -- but if it isn't clear with the name change already.

The change was purposeful. It was meant to be more like Fallout, and lean in that direction. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

I suppose you could play a Fallout game, but not really a multiplayer one. I'unno.

I'm not in favor or against this change. I found the old lore cringy, but that's coming from someone who very rarely plays, so take that sentence with a grain of salt.

Regardless -- I suppose content from different games would be cool to see if PNRP were to follow an older vision. I kind've wonder if a legacy server one day might be a good idea.

The old lore was a little cringy, but I was kind of hoping Bizz would improve upon it. Maybe expand it; possibly taking feedback from the community. The issue with utilizing Fallout lore is the fact that it can potentially limit roleplaying. I remember how people used PAC3 to play as whatever they wanted to (whether it be a rugged wastelander, bandit, exmilitary trooper, cyborg, super soldier, or simple survivalist, and other such things), as long as it made sense with the environment and situation. With this change, my character now has to be Fallout compatible (which is typically something that is Retrofuturistic and resembling the Cold War Era). Even if there aren't any rules on whether you wanted to roleplay as something Fallout related or not, it still would not feel right knowing that you would be completely out of place in what is supposed to be a serious roleplaying server. I also simply think that the change is WAY too sudden. It should have been with in the consent of the community, and it should be a gradual change so that people can adapt and be accustomed to it.

Either way. Many changes I think were for the better, and made the game a lot more fun. But nothing is perfect, and nothing can appeal to all audiences, but I must speak for those that are dissatisfied, because if we want the server to be as great as it can be, then we must find a way to make it appealing to as many people as we can.

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PostSubject: Re: My thoughts on PostNuke changes over years (Review)   Thu Oct 08, 2015 7:20 pm

whether it be a rugged wastelander, bandit, exmilitary trooper, cyborg, super soldier, or simple survivalist, and other such things---

Ah those are all fallout characters too..
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PostSubject: Re: My thoughts on PostNuke changes over years (Review)   Fri Oct 09, 2015 10:49 am

[quote="xxFalconArasxx"]
Aesop wrote:
what is supposed to be a serious roleplaying server.

we're not serious roleplay
more like semi-serious
serious roleplay would imply we're going to disable your mics and remove all gameplay elements
xoxoxo
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PostSubject: Re: My thoughts on PostNuke changes over years (Review)   Fri Oct 09, 2015 2:04 pm

Aesop wrote:
xxFalconArasxx wrote:
Aesop wrote:
what is supposed to be a serious roleplaying server.

we're not serious roleplay
more like semi-serious
serious roleplay would imply we're going to disable your mics and remove all gameplay elements
xoxoxo

LOL! Ok not that serious. I don't think an RP like that is even possible, unless you go outside in the real world and play pretend games.

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PostSubject: Re: My thoughts on PostNuke changes over years (Review)   Mon Oct 26, 2015 8:45 pm

Interesting thing about the vanilla PNRP backstory, we kind of left that open so other server owners could make one up for their own server. Plus, got to love the mystery in it.

Oh, hi btw.

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PostSubject: Re: My thoughts on PostNuke changes over years (Review)   Mon Oct 26, 2015 9:25 pm

hot damn! the TBU Overlord?!?
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PostSubject: Re: My thoughts on PostNuke changes over years (Review)   Mon Oct 26, 2015 9:27 pm

xxFalconArasxx wrote:
LOL! Ok not that serious. I don't think an RP like that is even possible

You must be new here.

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PostSubject: Re: My thoughts on PostNuke changes over years (Review)   Mon Oct 26, 2015 10:18 pm

"This is going to severely affect our role playing freedom, because we now have to abide to Fallout lore." I 100% agree with this.
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PostSubject: Re: My thoughts on PostNuke changes over years (Review)   Mon Oct 26, 2015 10:25 pm

wats wong wif fallout
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PostSubject: Re: My thoughts on PostNuke changes over years (Review)   Wed Oct 28, 2015 12:08 am

:F|F: Price wrote:
wats wong wif fallout
That was never the issue here. There is nothing wrong with Fallout, and don't let anyone tell you otherwise. The issue that I see is that the community is having an identity crisis on this server, because of the recent changes to a Fallout story line.

eldarstorm wrote:
Interesting thing about the vanilla PNRP backstory, we kind of left that open so other server owners could make one up for their own server. Plus, got to love the mystery in it.

Oh, hi btw.
I sure do love a story that leaves a lot open for the player's interpretation. It makes you feel more immersed. Oh and hello right back at you. It's flattering to know that my post actually caught the attention of one of the TBU owners.

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