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-- Ark 22 -- Adventure/rpg; Complete.


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#1021 peng007

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Posted 12 January 2011 - 04:30 AM

Though there was one rifle upgrade.
9.8/10. :snitch:
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#1022 111Studio

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Posted 12 February 2011 - 02:48 PM

Ehh... things I liked about the game:

1. You hint a little bit about the character's past through dialogues.

Things I disliked about the game:

Low FPS in the main areas, probably collision checking
And the fact that I got no help whatsoever on how to learn how the game works and how to figure things out. It was pretty much a hit or miss type deal.
Also...*MAJOR* issue I had was when you took health away and then expected me to pay 2/3 of my credits (without knowing that credits are easy as hell to get) to get it back. That was no bueno. =P

You've got a nice basis for a game. I stopped playing because I got frustrated with both the lag and how unskillfully I had to find things. There was no real reason to the game. No point for me to continue. You had a great story going at the beginning, but then you botched it honestly. It took pretty long to go around to each character for each character's snippet of dialogue. And then happening to miss the important ones was pretty annoying. Also what the hell is with the random sword that character gives me? Lol...I mean yeah "white ops" whatever...

Anyways...overall...I was really disappointed.
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#1023 Edhelcu

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Posted 31 July 2011 - 06:14 PM

Just finished playing this through for the second time (first was about 2 years ago). I probably said it once, but I'll say it again: this is a really great game. The dialogue is humorous (if sometimes a bit tedious), the dungeons and bosses are wonderfully challenging, the graphics are beautiful (given that it's retro and 2d). The parallel projection was well-done, and the music is superb, except for the main background tune that gets kind of annoying after a while.

Anyways, I've got a few questions this time around:
-One of the NPCs in Daska's village hints that I should be able to have "a couple of hundred shots" in my rifle, which I interpretted as "200" at least. However, I can't seem to find where to upgrade myself from 100 to 200. Is there such a place?

-Is there any way to get to these chests (circled in red)?
1st chest | 2nd chest

-Does this building serve any purpose? Can I get inside it?

-What about this building? There is no way to get to it from the "betting on the chests" game room by going underground - that leads you somewhere else (the room to the south).


Also, you may already be aware of the glitch wherein you go into the quickdraw arena, play once, then ask to play again, and then ask for a difficulty level that costs more credits than you have - you can then walk around where you, uh, shouldn't be. Screenshot.

P.S. I've been running this on Windows 7 32-bit and I have no lag, compatibility, or fullscreening problems (except that it changes the colour scheme to Windows 7 Basic which is minorly annoying but not a big deal. Actually, I suppose the dialogue boxes tend to load slowly, but I'm not sure if it's supposed to be that way or not)

Edited by Edhelcu, 31 July 2011 - 06:47 PM.

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#1024 Fire_from_Heaven

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Posted 28 August 2011 - 01:31 PM

Love this game.
Except its not easily replayable. I wish there was a strategy guide to get everything in the game.
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#1025 commodore swift

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Posted 04 September 2011 - 02:00 AM

Ark 22 Review: 2/10

So after hearing that this game is a "Game Maker classic," I decided to check it out. I'll tell you upfront, that this game is not good at all. In fact, I think it's really bad, and by that I mean it's awful. There are plenty of better GM games, so saying "well, it's good for a Game Maker game" is just not true. I don't know how you can say Srehpog made a good Game Maker game when he can't even use Game Maker (more on this below). Sure, this game has a lot of content, but not good content. Quality is better than quantity, and a turd is still a turd, no matter how long it is.

The Graphics
Let's start with the visuals, arguably the most important part of presenting a game - more important than the music. Ark 22 has a game resolution of 640x480, and then makes it full screen. Did the creator even think about how terrible the game would look for people with high resolutions? And there's not even an option to make the game windowed. Maybe none of you had a problem with this, but I sure did, and my computer isn't even very new. Then you have a main character who's 24x32, on a screen size of 640x480. Let me rephrase that: the main character is 1/400th the size of the screen view. Agoraphobics would be scared to death of this game.

The actual graphics are very detailed, but also amateur-ish. Out of hundreds of sprites there is not a single case of shadowing. Don't get me wrong when I say hundreds of sprites: many of them are recolored duplicates. The NPCs, for example, are all recolored duplicates of each other. The protagonist swings with his left hand when facing left, and his right hand when facing right. (Just because Link does this doesn't mean it isn't lazy. In fact, there was a legitimate concern in Zelda 1, an NES game, to save memory and just reverse sprites. This is not a valid excuse anymore). Is it possible that Srehpog put a lot of work into the graphics? Yes. Did he do them well? Nope.

Let me talk about the awful hitboxes of the game. I'm not sure where Srehpog learned about collision masks. Even the GM tutorials do a better job of collision masks. See below for an example of awful hitboxes:

Posted Image
Above: the main character is unable to move left, because apparently he's blocked by the NPC.

Posted Image
This is okay, though.

Posted Image
Can't go this way either.

The awful collision boxes are no joke. This isn't something excusable like "oh well it's no big deal." I got stuck inside a boulder my first time playing this, back in 2006. I hadn't saved in an hour. I got frustrated and just uninstalled. Srehpog does not know about Game Maker 101 concepts like not getting the character stuck inside things.

Also, you don't need to be facing somebody to talk to them. You only have to be standing directly on top of them. You also can't talk to people from the left or right. Here's another thing that's funny: While moving right, press the left arrow key. With both keys pressed, your character will stop moving, but his sprite will still be walking right!

http://i.imgur.com/X3hdM.png
You can talk to people while facing away from them. How rude!

That isn't the only example of Srehpog's poor programming knowledge. For instance instead of changing the protagonist's movement speed in the snowy environment, Srehpog just lowers the room speed from 30 to 12. It's sloppy and poorly done (and painfully obvious because of the FPS counter in the bottom right). Have you ever played a game at 12 FPS before? Yeah, it isn't pleasant. One amusing side-effect of this is that if you get hurt in the snow environment, the character has invulnerability for more than twice the time he usually would (same amount of frames though). He also doesn't know how to combine numbers with strings when displaying text:

http://i.imgur.com/gym93.png
Why is there a space before the slash? Because it is outputted separately from the 0's instead of in a single draw_text() function. Is this really something you'd find in a "Game Maker classic"?

The Music:
Can't say as much about the music, and that's because there is really no music content. Each track is about 8 seconds long, but copy/pasted many times so that the music file is longer. Srehpog did this so that the track only looped every couple of minutes, since he doesn't know how to make music files loops without pausing for a second. Basically, you are listening to an 8 second loop for the entire duration of this game.

The Gameplay:
My main problem with this game is how much text there is. None of it is informative in any way, it's all just filler. In Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening, when you wake up you are told that you were found washed up on the beach. Then you are given a shield and you set off. In Ark 22, when you wake up you have to read about 15 textboxes.

And that's pretty much all this game is. Textboxes. There is really not much gameplay at all. Most of the game is spent wandering around with no direction. There is really no goal to anything for most of the game, and the only way to progress is literally to talk to everybody. In the tutorial you had to talk to that one guy who's way off in a corner and colored similarly to the wall, making him hard to see. I had to endure talking to everyone else, reading all that pointless text and making no progress, before I got to him. It's the same in the first village (which is really annoying to explore, because the FPS drops to 12). You wander around, talking to everyone until you find the one random person with a statue. How Pink Floyd sums up fetch quest games like Ark 22:

Run, rabbit, run
Dig that hole, forget the sun,
And when at last the work is done
Don't sit down, it's time to dig another one


http://i.imgur.com/bc3OM.png
Above: do you know which of these NPCs holds the statue? Note how most of the NPCs are recolored duplicates.

Superficially, this game is similar to a 2d zelda game. However, unlike zelda, here he have a health bar instead of hearts, and "credits" instead of rupees. Seriously, how boring. There is no personality in the game at all, and the "story" is just a bunch of textboxes filled with technical jargon.

The Story
WAAAAAAAAAH cry the Ark 22 fanboys. WHY DO YOU FOCUS ON THE BAD GRAPHICS, THE BAD MUSIC, AND THE ATROCIOUS GAMEPLAY WHEN ARK 22 IS ABOUT STORY!!

First of all, calm down. I never finished this game, because I got a bug halfway through. I could have continued, but decided not to - the game is incredibly boring, the music is repetitive, and I hate getting random bugs. I can't really comment on the story, except that it shouldn't be the focus of any game. When did the Final Fantasy series stop selling? When story became the focus of the game. When did people stop caring about Zelda? When story became the focus of the game. People don't download applications to be told a story. You can just google Ark 22 and there is probably a synopsis of the story somewhere. A well-told story is a good addition to any game, but when the game has bad graphics, bad music, and bad gameplay, why would I stick around for the story when I can google it? Or I can just open a novel and read a story written by a PROFESSIONAL, and not some kid who doesn't proofread his textboxes.

Conclusion
This feels like a first game gone wrong. It feels like someone couldn't be bothered to learn the basics of Game Maker before embarking on a very ambitious project. It feels like someone who doesn't understand how to present graphics nicely or make a fun game, decided to sit down and make a game. Honestly, this would be fine for a first game (I still wouldn't enjoy it), so assuming that this is a first game, I'll give this a 2/10. If this isn't Srehpog's first game, I'd give this a 0/10 for being a big, unprofessional, mess of a stinker of an abomination. And unlike the Ark 22 lovers, I have fully supported every claim made in this post. Do you like the graphics? Support your claim. Do you think the gameplay is good? Support your claim. If you can sway me I'll raise the rating to a 2.5/10 (which rounds down to 2/10). Even though I'm infamous for hating Iji, I'd have to say that Iji is a massive improvement on this game. In my opinion, it is garbage, made by somebody who never properly learned Game Maker. Do not waste your time with this one.
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#1026 Desert Dog

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Posted 04 September 2011 - 06:15 AM

Do you like the graphics? Support your claim. Do you think the gameplay is good? Support your claim.


I thought the grpahics were o.k., and the gameplay was o.k.

I don't *need* to *support* any *claim* for what *I* like.

Even though I'm infamous for hating Iji,


Sounds like someone 'got a buzz' off some post they made about Iji, and decided to try it again? :) Grow up, kiddie.
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#1027 commodore swift

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Posted 04 September 2011 - 06:30 AM

Maybe you should read my post before jumping straight to the conclusion. You might learn something :)
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#1028 Desert Dog

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Posted 04 September 2011 - 06:54 AM

Maybe you should read my post before jumping straight to the conclusion. You might learn something :)


Me gosh. I wonder how I got to the conclusion?

Edited by Desert Dog, 04 September 2011 - 06:54 AM.

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#1029 commodore swift

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Posted 04 September 2011 - 06:16 PM

Well it's obvious you didn't read my entire posts. And those snippets that you quoted were taken out of context. Nice troll attempt though :)
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#1030 makerofthegames

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Posted 04 September 2011 - 11:27 PM

So after hearing that this game is a "Game Maker classic," I decided to check it out.
[...]
I got stuck inside a boulder my first time playing this, back in 2006. I hadn't saved in an hour. I got frustrated and just uninstalled.

?

P.S.
I was talking to someone I know who have been reading your reviews with me through an IM. We both agree you should go review AUS, and the opinions of two people on the internet? Man, that's worth a lot. Like two opinions. Please? :D
P.P.S.
By "AUS", I mean An Untitled Story.
Do note it used to be shareware.

Edited by makerofthegames, 04 September 2011 - 11:34 PM.

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#1031 Desert Dog

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Posted 05 September 2011 - 12:32 AM

Well it's obvious you didn't read my entire posts. And those snippets that you quoted were taken out of context. Nice troll attempt though :)


Well 'obviously'? :biggrin: 'taken out of context'? Nice troll attempt?

Very odd. Perhaps you should take your own advice and read your own post carefully, and then read my reply. Certainly, it isn't *obvious* that I didn't read you post. Certainly, my quotes were not taken out of context.

But if you want to feel that big bad DD is trying to troll 'the infamous' you, that's okay. :thumbsup: Feel happy, and relax. It's just the internet.
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#1032 commodore swift

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Posted 05 September 2011 - 12:35 AM

Wow, that is some persistent trolling.
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#1033 plate3

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Posted 10 September 2011 - 05:30 PM

He's not a troll. :c Ark22 is a fun video game though! ^^
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#1034 commodore swift

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Posted 10 September 2011 - 08:13 PM

No, it really isn't. Most of the game is walking around talking to people. The actual combat is really buggy, mostly because of the odd hitboxes as I've explained in my post above. Just play Link to the Past for better gameplay, or Terranigma for a better story.
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#1035 heyufool1

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Posted 20 September 2011 - 11:43 PM

No, it really isn't. Most of the game is walking around talking to people. The actual combat is really buggy, mostly because of the odd hitboxes as I've explained in my post above. Just play Link to the Past for better gameplay, or Terranigma for a better story.

Wow, I really hope you are trolling. This is a free game made by someone in their free time, not a game made by professionals. Also this game was made years ago and back then there were fewer tutorials and engines. By fewer I mean very very few. Now, you can easily find an engine and make a game with smooth gameplay, but back then most games were written from scratch and maybe he wasn't a genius programmer? Final note, this was not a commercial game so comparing it to commercial games is like comparing a home cooked meal to a 5 star restaurant's food.
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#1036 commodore swift

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 01:32 AM

Cave Story was released in 2004, a year before Ark22, and was much better even though it also was made by a single person and was also free. Also, the first Zelda was made by 8 people and it is still the best Zelda. So your argument is just silly.

he wasn't a genius programmer?

I'm afraid not. :confused:
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#1037 makerofthegames

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Posted 22 September 2011 - 10:34 PM

Also, the first Zelda was made by 8 people and it is still the best Zelda.

Commodore, no offense, but not very many people believe that. A lot of believe that Ocarina of Time is the best...game...of all time. I'm not one of those people. Unless you accidentally said "first Zelda*" when you meant "first N64 Zelda*" but I'm not sure what it is you meant. :sweat:

(*I don't know how many people made these games)

Edited by makerofthegames, 22 September 2011 - 10:40 PM.

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#1038 kickassgames

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Posted 29 October 2011 - 03:47 PM

Cave Story was released in 2004, a year before Ark22, and was much better even though it also was made by a single person and was also free. Also, the first Zelda was made by 8 people and it is still the best Zelda. So your argument is just silly.

he wasn't a genius programmer?

I'm afraid not. :confused:


So you gave it a 2/10...

This feels like a first game gone wrong. It feels like someone couldn't be bothered to learn the basics of Game Maker before embarking on a very ambitious project.


Now that's rich coming from someone who made this thing called 'Block Invasion'. I would say he had a very good understanding of Game Maker at this point, and it's not that hard either, try writing a game in c++ using the ugly as all hell, WIN32 api. Then you can try tell me that Game Maker has a lot to it.

A 2/10 is a horrible score, my belief is that it should be at least 5+. Your opinion is fine, but here is mine. This game may have its bugs but it makes a compromise with some pretty nice artwork and a rather decent story. The story may be boring to you, but it was pretty interesting, especially if you jump into it a bit and start creating content in your mind. I think that you need to rethink your score and FINISH THE GAME BEFORE REVIEWING!
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#1039 rosareven

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Posted 31 December 2011 - 03:52 AM

Cave Story was released in 2004, a year before Ark22, and was much better even though it also was made by a single person and was also free. Also, the first Zelda was made by 8 people and it is still the best Zelda. So your argument is just silly.

he wasn't a genius programmer?

I'm afraid not. :confused:

You do aware that GameMaker is also designed for those with minimal programming knowledge right?
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#1040 Knuked

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Posted 31 December 2011 - 10:09 PM

I've played Ark22 and yea it has it's bugs and oddities but the game is decent. That review by Commodore should not be taken to seriously either!

WAAAAAAAAAH cry the Ark 22 fanboys. WHY DO YOU FOCUS ON THE BAD GRAPHICS, THE BAD MUSIC, AND THE ATROCIOUS GAMEPLAY WHEN ARK 22 IS ABOUT STORY!!

You seem rather immature. There is nothing wrong with that, but it makes it hard to take your review seriously.

I never finished this game, because I got a bug halfway through. I could have continued, but decided not to.

So there was a bug which prevented the you from finishing the game, yet the bug didn't really prevent you from completing the game, you just decided not to? This review is essentially based upon half the game then?

When did the Final Fantasy series stop selling? When story became the focus of the game.

Final Fantasy seems to be doing just fine.

When did people stop caring about Zelda? When story became the focus of the game.

Zelda seems to be doing just fine.

The last two statements I quoted seem to be an attempt to validate that games should not focus on story. The fact is, those games do focus on story and have not stopped selling. They also have received great reviews from both professional reviewers and the player base.

You come off like you hate the fact so many people have enjoyed this game. I understand some of the complaints, but then there are some that just show plain nit picking. The programming, design, and artwork in this game is not professional and that also holds true for 95% of the games created with GameMaker. This is not because we are using GameMaker, it's because the majority of us do this for fun because we are not professionals. I would be more inclined to agree with some of your points if this game cost money but it doesn't. You are treating it as if it cost you something.

Edited by Knuked, 01 January 2012 - 01:49 PM.

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#1041 dpacom

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Posted 17 July 2012 - 09:13 PM

ok, i's new here, and ask help would be great.
i got passed level 1, how do i get to level 2 area?
i was told it's a water area in the east, and the only way to there is thur some fog/storm/mist.
i went east 200/300 times and never got clost to it.
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#1042 bfg666

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 01:51 AM

ok, i's new here, and ask help would be great.
i got passed level 1, how do i get to level 2 area?
i was told it's a water area in the east, and the only way to there is thur some fog/storm/mist.
i went east 200/300 times and never got clost to it.

A link to a video walkthrough was posted here some time ago. Check the few last pages of this thread.
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