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Author Topic: The Far Corners of the World: Chapter 1 - The Book, the Box and the Key  (Read 11745 times)

Wesray

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I am proud to present my first game:

The Far Corners of the World: Chapter 1 - The Book, the Box and the Key



Story:
Young Jeffrey Carter has it all: a great flat, a good job and a beautiful (and rich) fiancee. One day however his peaceful life is turned upside down when he receives a mysterious message from his estranged sister. What starts as a journey to atone for past failings soon takes a sinister turn. Little does Jeff know that the adventure of his lifetime is about to begin...

Features:
- A 2d adventure game inspired by classics like Zak McKracken, Monkey Island and the Gabriel Knight series
- An original story full of twists and turns
- 50+ rooms of crazy yet (hopefully) logical puzzles
- An optional arcade mini game

Some of you may remember my first announcement of FCotW on these forums, way back in December 2009. Since then my my little pet project has grown significantly and now the big day of release has finally come: My thanks go to forum members DrWhite, Arj0n and Ascovel and all the others that supported me in this endeavor.

Now give it a try if you want - I hope you'll have as much fun playing the game, as I had developing it. Oh, and please don't withhold your feedback, whether positive or negative. All your opinions and suggestions are welcome - they will help me to improve with Chapter 2! :)

Download the game HERE!
« Last Edit: 28 May 2013, 22:42 by Wesray »
THE FAR CORNERS OF THE WORLD: Chapter 2 currrently in the works...

Ascovel

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A beta-tester here. I want to strongly recommend the game it's really high quality work with a large amount of locations and impressive playing length too.

kconan

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Congrats on releasing your first game!  Looks like fun, I should have some time this weekend to check it out.

CaptainD

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Well done getting your game finished!  I was surprised to see the room count, I thought this was going to be much smaller (well, so did you I guess!  ;D)

arj0n

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Gratz Jurgen!!

A *highly recommended* game, so go download and play!

Dervish

  • Posts: 100
about 1/3 of the way thru so far really good.  Although I wish the character would have stayed in his "dressed up" clothes longer his casual clothes seem kinda ratty for a supposed rich guy.  I don't mean this as an offense but it seems to me that you padded the puzzles in the hospital a little too much, but saying that I have also liked quite a few of the puzzles maybe not the most imaginative puzzles sometimes but well implemented.


I would also highly reccomend it, and I congratulate you on this being your first game awesome accomplishment.

---------
Well finished the game Got 158 out 160 any reason to be a completist?

My hats off to you very well done. Now you must complete it :)  or else...
« Last Edit: 02 Sep 2011, 09:56 by Dervish »

Cogliostro

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I REALLY like how you hid the GPS coordinates.  Quite clever.  I'm still trying to get the docs to stop gabbing about golf, but so far I like it.

And, I found a bug:
Spoiler: ShowHide

When I first enter the apartment bldg, Suzies door can be seen.  When I use the HAND icon on the door, Jeff turns to face the main door, opens it, and steps into Suzie's apartment, without having to actually walk up the stairs.


 - Cogliostro
« Last Edit: 01 Sep 2011, 21:45 by Cogliostro »
"First things first, but not necessarily in that order." - Dr. Who

Cogliostro

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About halfway through the game now, my comments so far:



PROs:
It's just too much fun!  The background for Jeff and his sister was beautifully told.  I can't over state that.  The puzzles are pretty good.  Enough of them are thrown in the players path to make the story enjoyable.  The drawings of the rooms are primitive, but have enough detail so that the players can overlook it and get on with the game.  (i.e. Nothing screams novice effort like completely blank walls. )   Spider makes a great side character, usually when characters are that unimportant to the game, their personality gets skipped to the point that they are more of a decoration than a person.  Nice job.



CONs:
I've been enjoying the game to the point where I've been nitpicking.  Take that as a compliment.  When individual points stand out as errors, it means everything else was working right.  Anyhow:

Spend $1000 on apartment rent, but roam over the city to find tweezers.  Thsi struck me as odd, but what the hell, this is an adventure game.

Lottery numbers come up once.  JUST ONCE!!  Like all other dialogues, they will time out and go away, if you miss it and haven't saved recently, life sucks.   I favor the choice where each conversation MUST be clicked out of in order to continue.

Trip to Club convinced me I was supposed to be able to get into the club, right then!  Having something suggest you can't solve the number pad would have been appreciated.  Some puzzles obviously must be solved later, but passcode/password puzzles occassionally mean TRY HARDER.  With the newspaper clipping in the trash, and an uncomminicative bouncer at the front door.  I squandered some time on various combinations of dates in American and UK standards.

Tried to use the stove to read the lime juice message, made sense to me.

When you enter into the waiting room at the hospital, you can't go immediately left to leave the screen, you have to go into the room, before you can back out.



Overall, a great game.  Doubly so for your first effort.

 - Cogliostro
"First things first, but not necessarily in that order." - Dr. Who

Wesray

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Thanks for the replies, guys! Glad you are enjoying it so far!  :)

@CaptainD:
Regarding the room count, initially I expected around 20 rooms or so, but yeah it kind of exploded... ;D altogether it's more than 70 rooms, but many of them are used for cutscenes only and some are only slight variations of others.

@Dervish:
Sorry for the ratty looking clothes - maybe Jeff will change them some time down the road, but don't count on it! And congratulations for finishing the game so fast - how long did it take you in hours, give or take? What did you think about the overall difficulty?

If you get the full 160 points there's a short (and I really mean short) extra scene at the end. See it as an incentive... :) But I can guess which points you've missed, so if you wanna know contact me!

Chapter 2 is already in the works, but knowing me it will be quite some time until it's finished...

@Cogliostro
One note about the lottery numbers... I saw that problem mentioned a few times, but
Spoiler: ShowHide

even if you don't catch the numbers the first time, you can still get them later, by simply looking at the TV - they are displayed at the bottom of the screen until you have solved that puzzle.

There shouldn't be a dead-end like that in the game, forcing you to reload. If you find one, I really fucked up! :D

Thanks for the advice regarding the stove, I didn't think about that one! I'll add a fitting message in the next version of the game.

The problem with the stairs I know about, they were a pain in the *** and still have a few problems. I guess because the walkable area for the stairs are so small. I'll try to find a solution for the next version - in the meantime think of it as a shortcut! :)

Regarding general puzzle logic, yeah, I had to succumb to adventure game logic a few times. Many of these improvisations wouldn't make sense in real life, especially if you were running around a city like London. Well, I try to sell it as one of Jeff's character quirks and will try to do better in my next game. ;) Also, if you have already been at the souvenir shop of totally useless items, you know why Jeff never buys the things he needs... :D

Looking forward to the rest of your comments once you've completed the game!
« Last Edit: 02 Sep 2011, 20:08 by Wesray »
THE FAR CORNERS OF THE WORLD: Chapter 2 currrently in the works...

Cogliostro

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Just finished with a score of 154.

As far as the game goes, in a word: Wow! 

There are games you play - commercial games too - where everything is done correctly, but after a few hours you just can't be bothered to finish.  TFCotW hooked me BIG time.  I HAD to keep playing.

Trying to capture why it had that effect is probably impossible, but let me comment on a few contributing factors: the waiting room had people who had no effect on game play, the T-Rex was a copy of Sue, Spider's attitude, the basic idea that the things are hidden by the sister thus lending itself to adventure-game-solutions rather than relying on a suspension of disbelif on the part of the player,  and annoying the couple in the park!  All the little things that come together.  Anyhow a great game.

Bug: this one might be legit
Spoiler: ShowHide

If you bother the love-birds in the wrong order, you have to repeat steps.
I did it: DOG, CELL, KID, and since that didn't send them packing, I did the DOG again.
It's always possible I goofed up and restored a game in the midst of all that, but I'm pretty sure I didn't


Hope to see the next chapter soon.

 - Cogliostro
"First things first, but not necessarily in that order." - Dr. Who

Wesray

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@Cogliostro:
Good to hear you enjoyed the game!

About the love-bird bug, I wasn't able to reproduce it. The order you suggested worked for me. However it's still possible that there's a problem deeply buried in my scripts somewhere. I'll double-check whether there's something that can go wrong.
THE FAR CORNERS OF THE WORLD: Chapter 2 currrently in the works...

Morgan LeFlay

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Is there a walkthrough?

srnickolas

  • Posts: 27
Excellent Game!Nice solid,original puzzles!I am near the end(131/160), i am stuck though and would appreciate a little help:

Spoiler: ShowHide
I am in the sewers and try to open the stone chest.There are three indetations marked 1,2,3 with the apropriate dots.Now i think each number corresponds for a specific category in the book.There are five symbols for each indetation.In each indetation 4 symbols belong to the corresponding category and one belongs to an other category.So for the first indetation (marked with one dot) the first,second,forth and fifth symbol belong to the first category in the book whereas the third symbol belongs in the second...and so on for the other indetations.In the top and bottom of the chest are two rows of symbols with obvious meanings that maybe link to a combination for the chest(each row for a corresponding lock left and right?).So for example the heart shaped thing would be the symbol corresponding to love,so the first symbol in the first indetation.First thing i tried was putting the three symbols that dont much their corresponding category in each indetation=symbol category but didn't work.Second thing i tried was trying all combinations of three(took me 40 seconds),didnt work.Then i took the combination theory...tried firstly the top row and clicked the symbols one by one in the correct order(from left to right), then the bottom row, nothing.I took the two curled lines as the sea-water symbol(second indetation third symbol) the fish thingy as meal-feast-heal-help symbol(first indetation third symbol) the heart thingy as love (first indetation first symbol) the mountain thingy as earth-land (third indetation first symbol) the star thingy as luck(second indetation first symbol) the skull thingy as death-silence (first indetation fifth symbol) and the human thingy as person-people-man-woman (second indetation fifth symbol).Also tried fish thingy as money-riches-health (literal or no , First indetation second symbol) cause a)fish=food would be in a sense health and riches for a tribal man b)the symbol had a notice scribed under it(literal and not) and it striked me as strange and c) the symbol i used before(meal-feast-heal-help) did not belong to the corresponding category(first indetation  but second category) but once again nothing.Also noticed that at the bottom row there is the human thingy symbol whereas in the top there isnt  and that all the symbols repeat eather two times or three, but dunno if all this is keen to the solution...Could you help a little here,maybe pointing me to the correct route?Thanks!!!

srnickolas

  • Posts: 27
OK found it

Spoiler: ShowHide
 It was the three symbols that didnt belong to the corresponding indetation-category but you had to press the tile-reset button after...a little strange i my opinion,i think it would be better for the chest to just open automatically,Clever though!
« Last Edit: 06 Sep 2011, 02:31 by srnickolas »

LUniqueDan

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That's soooo my kind of game... Downloading.
"I've... seen things you people wouldn't believe. Destroyed pigeon nests on the roof of the toolshed. I watched dead mice glitter in the dark, near the rain gutter trap.
All those moments... will be lost... in time, like tears... in... rain."

srnickolas

  • Posts: 27
Finished it with 158/160!Very good game and quite lengthy!Looking forward for the next part!Especially:

Spoiler: ShowHide
I liked the gps ridle,the multible uses of your cell phone a)in some excellent riddles(answering machine,doctor distraction) and b)getting the optional help by your wife,also the whole picturegram riddle was gorgeous and i loved the scored gameplay,reminded me of sierra on-line games!


On the opposite side some minor bugs that you probably already know:

Spoiler: ShowHide
I have a 4/3 monitor and when i hightlight objects near the bottom of the screen their name arent viewable.In two occasions i got stuck for a while a)when i fell from the ladder behind the bar the name of the rod from the ladder wasnt viewable so i thought at first that it was just background scenery and b)in the substation the scarf and bottom track hotspots also werent visible.An other minor problem when you enter a area you cant leave immediatly by the same exit,but instead move forward a little and and come back to the exit.Lastly when i use the scarf on the cat at the hotel i dont get a possible answer.I didn't actually grasp what to do with the scarf,but i guess the two points i lost had to do with this item(V.B.?)...:)

Cogliostro

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I *assume* that this is a mistake...
Spoiler: ShowHide

When talking to Gwen in the apartment the background music is romantic.  Unless you're setting the stage for Tiffany betraying Jeff later on in the series, and having him fall in love with the red head.  This struck me a very odd choice.

On the other hand, traversing through the sewers in the dark, that music was perfect.


 - Cogliostro
« Last Edit: 06 Sep 2011, 20:47 by Cogliostro »
"First things first, but not necessarily in that order." - Dr. Who

Shadow1000

  • Posts: 982
I just finished with 156 points.

My comment: this is an absolutely outstanding game. I would have to say that this is as close to the original adventure games as you can get.

What I liked about it:

- The length was perfect. Long enough to be fun but not so long as to just get boring
- The story development flowed well. Some games have such detailed and complex plots that you just can't follow or don't want to follow.
- Character development was pretty good. Interestingly I know more about what Gwen and Tiffany are like than about Jeff.
- Most important: the puzzles were (mostly) logical enough that you could solve them with enough effort. In some games one can spend hours working on something and then find out the solution and realize that there simply is no way to have figured that on your own. For the most part, the puzzles were hard enough to provide a challenge without creating a frustrating dead end and there were very few (I can only think of 2) pixel hunts.

My only gripe about the game is the quality of the graphics. For a first game, I'm still highly impressed but considering the quality of the game, if you do (you better!) work on the sequel, you may consider putting more effort into the graphics. As well, I had to turn off my speakers a few times because the music (which usually enhanced the game) drove me CRAZY while staring at the screen trying to solve something!!

Overall, kudos for an exceptional game and I'm waiting anxiously for the sequel!!

SHADOW

Wesray

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@srnickolas:
Spoiler: ShowHide
I have a 4/3 monitor and when i hightlight objects near the bottom of the screen their name arent viewable.In two occasions i got stuck for a while a)when i fell from the ladder behind the bar the name of the rod from the ladder wasnt viewable so i thought at first that it was just background scenery and b)in the substation the scarf and bottom track hotspots also werent visible.
[/quote]
Thanks for the tip! I've only tested window-mode and full-screen widescreen, so I hadn't noticed the problem. In the future I better not hide objects too far down the screen! I'll try to fix that for the next version.
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[hide]An other minor problem when you enter a area you cant leave immediatly by the same exit,but instead move forward a little and and come back to the exit.

Darn, that was a problem I introduced shortly before the release, because I wanted to make the exits easier to use in windowed mode. At least it's easily fixed for the next update.
Quote
Spoiler: ShowHide
Lastly when i use the scarf on the cat at the hotel i dont get a possible answer.

Ups, that one I overlooked.
Quote
Spoiler: ShowHide
I didn't actually grasp what to do with the scarf,but i guess the two points i lost had to do with this item(V.B.?)...:)

The scarf's not really important. Just a little detail that will help tying the games better together when all is said and done.

@Cogliostro:
I *assume* that this is a mistake...
[hint]
When talking to Gwen in the apartment the background music is romantic.  Unless you're setting the stage for Tiffany betraying Jeff later on in the series, and having him fall in love with the red head.  This struck me a very odd choice.
On the other hand, traversing through the sewers in the dark, that music was perfect.
[/hint]

Haha, you mean the standard music in the apartment? I didn't mean for it to be romantic but rather melancholic, you know because Suzie lives there. But I see how one could get the wrong idea. As for Jeff and Gwen? Well, he'd probably lose an arm! ;)

@Shadow1000:
My comment: this is an absolutely outstanding game. I would have to say that this is as close to the original adventure games as you can get.
Wow, thank you! That's a great compliment if I ever heard one! I'm really glad that my love for the classics shows, tough my games will probably never come close to THAT level of greatness.
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- Character development was pretty good. Interestingly I know more about what Gwen and Tiffany are like than about Jeff.
That one's quite intriguing. Gwen I understand since she's a prominent and quite eccentric character. But Tiff I was worried would come off as a bit underdeveloped, as we don't see too much of her in this game. As for Jeff, he used to be a bit of a rebel before he's settled into this rich life-style, which he's still not entirely comfortable with. But I agree that most we learn about him is in relation to Suzie or Tiff. He also has this whole crazy improvisation thing going on that's supposed to show he's rather unconventional, but well, it IS an adventure game, so I guess that's par for the course. ;D But there's always hope for more character-development in the next game!
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For the most part, the puzzles were hard enough to provide a challenge without creating a frustrating dead end and there were very few (I can only think of 2) pixel hunts.
Which one were the pixel-hunts in your opinion? Maybe I can make them a bit easier.
Quote
My only gripe about the game is the quality of the graphics. For a first game, I'm still highly impressed but considering the quality of the game, if you do (you better!) work on the sequel, you may consider putting more effort into the graphics.
I fully agree that the graphics are weak. Graphics were the reason I've never attempted a game before, since I cannot draw for the life of me. Still, I didn't want that to stop me from making a game, so it was learning by doing. And I got a bit better in time, I have some hilarious before-after backgrounds to show you - I'll upload them sometime. But the result's still not too impressive I'm afraid. However I certainly will keep trying and hopefully improve further. :)
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As well, I had to turn off my speakers a few times because the music (which usually enhanced the game) drove me CRAZY while staring at the screen trying to solve something!!
Hehe, that's my fault I guess. DrWhite provided me with some really impressive tracks, but due to the scope of the game I had to keep some of the temp tracks from the internet in the end. Not all of them are equally fitting I'm afraid.

For all of you asking about chapter 2, it will definitely be released, all the more in light of the positive responses part 1 has garnered. For heaven's sake, I have a 200 page design document sitting on my desktop, outlining the whole series - that's more than my thesis! But with a busy day-job and other commitments it will probably take me another two years to get it done. But don't worry, it will be finished eventually!
THE FAR CORNERS OF THE WORLD: Chapter 2 currrently in the works...

Shadow1000

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Wow, thank you! That's a great compliment if I ever heard one! I'm really glad that my love for the classics shows, tough my games will probably never come close to THAT level of greatness.


I don't know how far back your adventure game experience goes but I was addicted to the original text-based Adventure from the late 70s and Mystery Mansion from the same time period. I'd guess that many people around here weren't even born then. I played the original King's Quests and similar games from that era (late 80s). A lot of the games I play here have just lost the logic behind solving puzzles and the mystique those originals held WITHOUT any graphics at all (or CGA graphics)! (more about this later).

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That one's quite intriguing. Gwen I understand since she's a prominent and quite eccentric character. But Tiff I was worried would come off as a bit underdeveloped, as we don't see too much of her in this game.

True. But she shows character in the times she does emerge

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As for Jeff, he used to be a bit of a rebel before he's settled into this rich life-style, which he's still not entirely comfortable with.

Well, we see that in the intro and from things he says but really there's not much that tells us what he's like otherwise.

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But there's always hope for more character-development in the next game!

My comment was that the development was not bad. I hate to compare and I know that comparisons to Ben Jordan are overused by now but if you think in that direction you'll see what I mean.

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Which one were the pixel-hunts in your opinion? Maybe I can make them a bit easier.

Spoiler: ShowHide
I simply could not find the GPS without asking on the forum. Of COURSE I clicked the drawers when examining the room only to be told there's nothing in the drawers of interest. I didn't know that you have to click the exact spot on one of the drawers that I missed till the GPS was found. I also found it frustrating that the ONLY item you can throw at the cake was the pebbles from the park (which were hard to find). When you have an inventory of 16 items and you have to guess the EXACT right item to throw, that is just frustrating rather than a good puzzle. I also spent almost 2 hours in the last scene. I don't want to be more specific but the area you have to interact with to get the light just eluded me till I went over the screen with the mouse for the thousandth time


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I fully agree that the graphics are weak. Graphics were the reason I've never attempted a game before, since I cannot draw for the life of me.

Simple graphics do NOT detract from a good game like this. As I pointed out above, the orginal games were completely text based and relied on the imagination of the player. That wouldn't fly today when we play eye-popping 3D realism games on 24" screens (or bigger) and we have surround-sound effects but it shows that good aesthetics is a PLUS to a good adventure game, not a sine qua non.

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Still, I didn't want that to stop me from making a game, so it was learning by doing.

We're all glad you did. VERY Impressive for a first!! :)

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Hehe, that's my fault I guess. DrWhite provided me with some really impressive tracks, but due to the scope of the game I had to keep some of the temp tracks from the internet in the end. Not all of them are equally fitting I'm afraid.

Well, the matching of the music with the room was pretty good. It was the looping after staring at something for an hour
Spoiler: ShowHide
such as the chest or disc puzzles
that drove me nuts.

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For all of you asking about chapter 2, it will definitely be released, all the more in light of the positive responses part 1 has garnered. ... But don't worry, it will be finished eventually!

Ok, last gripe (I promise!):

There's nothing wrong with a serial game, even one with a cliffhanger ending. But I feel that SOME of the mysteries the player spent the entire game solving should be resolved! After all that time I still don't know
Spoiler: ShowHide
why Suzie is in a coma, who the villain is,  how and why they put her in a coma, what the disc is, and of course if Suzie ever recovers!
. While perhaps some of these questions could leave us in suspense until the next installment, there should have been at least something resolved by the time the game is complete.

Just my opinion...I'm sure there will be those who agree and some who think I'm nuts!

Once again, congrats on a great game and I'm waiting for the next installment!

SHADOW
« Last Edit: 06 Sep 2011, 23:47 by Shadow1000 »