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View Full Version : Level links - Worth it?



CYMBOL
10-19-2011, 12:56 AM
Remember seeing the trailer for level links in the LBP2 trailer and thinking, ZOMG!!!!

Sadly, in the game, going through one usually meant continuing on alone if the person wasn't on your friends list. More recently is the issue of links being locked.:(

I was making a level that would have benefited greatly from this option, but the level requires the player to spend time exploring, and I simply couldn't ask the player to spend all that time, just to end with a locked level link. So, now I'm pulling my hair out trying to figure out a way to fit enough in one level while still feeling complete.

So, I've decided not to bother with level links. They currently don't work properly, and they take up a level slot anyway, so, for, I just don't feel like I get anything worthwhile by using them.

In fact, I plan to make my Jumper sub- level its own level. (I played it yesterday for fun, and came to a locked link, even after popping.) I didn't spend all that time on the second part just to annoy the player and have them never see it.

What about you guys? You still using level links?

Spazz
10-19-2011, 01:13 AM
Well, I'd only use a level link if it's REALLY necessary.

If the thermo of my level gets too complicated for it to fully handle, I'd make a level link to continue the level. You could do the thermo glitch but I believe that overdoing it will glitch up the game.

CYMBOL
10-19-2011, 01:57 AM
Well, I'd only use a level link if it's REALLY necessary.

If the thermo of my level gets too complicated for it to fully handle, I'd make a level link to continue the level. You could do the thermo glitch but I believe that overdoing it will glitch up the game.

Yeah, I'm doing the thermo glitch, and learning the hard way about the glitches. If level links worked I wouldn't have had to spend the last four days clearing up those glitches instead of happily creating.

Sometimes I wonder why I do this to myself. Nothing is more frustrating than losing hours of my personal time fixing glitches, or trying to figure out ways to get around broken things in LBP. I could have almost been done with this level, instead I'm weeks behind.

Very frustrated. My personal time is little and precious to me. Makes me feel like maybe its just time to put the game aside. :(

Lordwarblade
10-19-2011, 02:39 AM
Because most of my levels are 1 player i just use level links and say stuff it. My latest level Bot has had so many problems because i tried to find ways to cheat the thermo that i have decided level links is the way to for now on.

warlord_evil
10-19-2011, 02:46 AM
Did you say the locked level link thing was something that happened sometimes? I do not understand the circumstances under which it does happen...

Perhaps you could give the player a sticker or some kind of code at the end of the level that when used at the start of the level, it will take them right to the level link so they can try again?

As for my opinion for level links, I don't use them for three reasons:
-They take publishing space.
-They cause long loading times for players and they can't back-out of it.
-I never seem to run out of thermo so I don't need a second level published.

CYMBOL
10-19-2011, 02:59 AM
Yeah, it seems to be random. I've played my Jumper level many times, first time the level link was locked. Usually, if you POP yourself, the link will reset, but not always. Mine didn't.

I saw Julesy Jules posting quite a bit when he published his latest Star Wars level about trying to figure out why so many people were having issues with the level links. Such a hassle. It's been over half a year and still no fix or communication from MM on the subject.

midnight_heist
10-19-2011, 03:40 AM
Level links are terrible.
Why have MM not even mentioned them?!
There is the obvious kick-if-more-than-1-player bug, and even if you are playing alone, sometimes they are locked/not active.
It's been like this since release..

When I saw this level linking feature, I was hoping this would stop the need (or should I say want) for thermo glitching.
Thermo glitching is so stupid. (IMHO!)
You want the player to have long load times? Unstable builds? Dead ends? Don't forget that extra emitter warning in the level's description!
Learn to work within the level's available space people.
Limitations breed creativity and all that.

The only case I would even think about using a level link would be perhaps if my "1-player only" level had a purely cinematic intro.
Even then I wouldn't trust it.

OmegaSlayer
10-19-2011, 06:33 AM
I prefer keys.
I prefer keys waaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too much.
Also with keys I'm not forced to replay part 1 of the level over and over if I must give up for whatever reason in part 2.

Ungreth
10-19-2011, 07:24 AM
Hey what? Level links have stopped working altogether now you say? :boo:

Is this only in the case of new levels where the creator "sets" the link post-patch, or does it also affect levels that were published pre-patch? If the later, then that means most of my levels are botched! I'd learned to live with the idea that players would be split up when entering a link, but this sounds like something new and more level destroying.

Anyways, no I don't feel level links are a waste of time. Not in concept anyway (though in practice they are flawed by the bugs). I like being able to split a story up into episodes, giving each part it's own individual flavour while continuing an over-arching theme and maintaining flow. I don't think I could have done Space Assassins 2 in any other way TBH.

julesyjules
10-19-2011, 10:10 AM
I saw Julesy Jules posting quite a bit when he published his latest Star Wars level about trying to figure out why so many people were having issues with the level links. Such a hassle. It's been over half a year and still no fix or communication from MM on the subject.

Yeh, I had a bit of trouble. I had put them out of the players reach for an aesthetic reason, and had set them up to be triggered by a tag on a sequencer, but I didn't take into account that for anyone with a laggy connection, the sequencer ran its course and was over before the game connected to the next level. Not exactly a design error on my behalf but not the most sensible choice either. Then I changed it to a perm switch, and this still wasn't triggering for some. I got one message that the link hadn't triggered but he managed to get through by jumping up to it and manually activating it. No idea why that worked for him, but apparently it did, so I just moved the links where players could reach them if they needed to.

So yeh, big hassle and I've no idea if they're still causing problems, I've gotten no in-game feedback about them since. Making them separate would work out more reliable, but the first and third levels are actually pretty short and just wouldn't cut it (IMO) as stand alones, I'd want to re-structure them more equally. I'm just chalking this one up to experience and letting them be.

craigmond
10-19-2011, 11:05 AM
They are still very usefull IMO. Im using them to show certain levels in a Hub. However I would say there isnt much search choice.

If the level links have stopped working, then I need to think of something else. I've had no trouble with level links yet.

Rpg Maker
10-19-2011, 02:57 PM
Level links are terrible.
Why have MM not even mentioned them?!
There is the obvious kick-if-more-than-1-player bug, and even if you are playing alone, sometimes they are locked/not active.
It's been like this since release..

When I saw this level linking feature, I was hoping this would stop the need (or should I say want) for thermo glitching.
Thermo glitching is so stupid. (IMHO!)



Thermo glitch is possible in LBP2?

Ayneh
10-19-2011, 03:03 PM
Level Link Survival - how many level links can your friends and you survive before being disconnected?

CYMBOL
10-19-2011, 03:38 PM
Thermo glitch is possible in LBP2?

It's not the same as the LBP1 version. And very glitchy. But its still just basically emitting and destroying as the level progresses.


They are still very usefull IMO. Im using them to show certain levels in a Hub. However I would say there isnt much search choice.

If the level links have stopped working, then I need to think of something else. I've had no trouble with level links yet.

First time I remember seeing this was in Leklak's hub. She had a description stating that if the level links were locked to POP yourself and they should reset. I had no idea what she was talking about, then I saw the locked link in the level. I popped, and it reset and was open. However, sometimes you POP, and it just won't reset.

I never had it happen on my level till the other night. Made me wonder how many boos had come from people landing at the end to a locked level link.

To make matters worse, to use them in my Explorers level, is need several to allow for data transfer. (To keep track of how many energy cells you had found). I'm not comfortable using one level link, not to mention using many. And, if someone takes the time to really explore, they could spend over 20 min looking around. Can't imagine what kind of angry comments I'd get if they couldn't use the link. I'm sure they wouldn't ne happy at the thought of redoing the first part, and hoping the link worked this time.

So, for, if the links are faulty (think the lock issue started around 1.05) then I simply can't use them.

Which leaves me using the thermo glitch (I had planned on using links, but I've been seeing the locks more recently, which scared me away). But now, I'm jumping through hoops to keep the level functional, and just sitting back lately wondering if its even worth all this frustration.

It's been over half a year, MM should have fixed this by now. Instead, its getting worse.

Sorry all, just very annoyed. I should be about done with this level, instead I've spent weeks stabilizing it.

*sigh*

Rpg Maker
10-19-2011, 04:04 PM
It's not the same as the LBP1 version. And very glitchy. But its still just basically emitting and destroying as the level progresses.

Ohh if that's the case my entire level is just one huge glitch lol In my experience it depends on how people control the emitters; Most levels aren't supposed to be that glitchy, which is why i made a loading screen in my game. It actually gives the game time to delete and emit objects safely, and as a result i didnt run into a ton of probems even though i have a 2-4 hour rpg on one level--so ultimately, it depends on how you do it i guess. Of course, i dont do platformers, so the loading comes off as pretty natural.

I dont think that can be classified as a glitch, though, i mean emitters are built into the system to be temporary objects--well spawned objects. Its more like an exploit if anything. With that said, i will probably never use a level link ever in life.

SnipySev
10-19-2011, 07:10 PM
I think they are a necessity when your level is too big for 1 thermo and too small to be divided into chapters, an option for when you have a series and abusive when you force someone to go into another level of yours. Just like many other tools in LBP they are a nice feature to have when the situation calls for it but turn into an annoyance when used without justification.

MM should totally fix the bug that makes people diverge when crossing a level link. There are many things MM should have fixed by now. If only they gave a rest to the DLC commitee to focus on fixing the game.

N0X_Psych0
10-20-2011, 03:21 AM
They make too much money from DLC to stop focusing on it to fix level links. :p

I use the thermo glitch and I love it. It doesn't cause any problems as long as you implement it correctly.

That's a serious bummer about level links though, I didn't know they were so messed up. I was going to add them into my level, but now I'm not so sure. :(

FEAR
10-20-2011, 03:35 AM
"Please let it not be linked to an unrelated level through the scoreboard!"
"Please let it not be linked to an unrelated level through the scoreboard!"
"Please let it not be linked to an unrelated level through the scoreboard!"
Please, PLEASE, PLEEEEAAAAASSSSSSEEE!!!!

I think that level links are good if they're not involved in the scoreboard.

Ayneh
10-20-2011, 09:43 AM
"Please let it not be linked to an unrelated level through the scoreboard!"
"Please let it not be linked to an unrelated level through the scoreboard!"
"Please let it not be linked to an unrelated level through the scoreboard!"
Please, PLEASE, PLEEEEAAAAASSSSSSEEE!!!!

I think that level links are good if they're not involved in the scoreboard.
I never play the level linked through the scoreboard, since I didn't choose to play them. I was disappointed when gevurah22 did that for most of their LBP2 levels.

Shadowriver
10-20-2011, 01:58 PM
I didnt have a any problems with level link so far

Reef1978
10-20-2011, 02:30 PM
Try putting your link into an emitter and allow the player to respawn it if it's locked. Don't forget to put a note to tell the player this too. Works for me.

CYMBOL
10-20-2011, 09:19 PM
I didnt have a any problems with level link so far

I went into the CC14 Contraption voting level yesterday. They had the 5 contest levels availed through level links for people to play and vote on.

4 of the 5 links had locks. :mad:

So, I popped, and everything unlocked, but I didn't respawn. I hit replay. This time, everything was unlocked. I chose one, and after a long loading screen, I was sent back to my pod with a failed to load message.

It's great that you haven't had any issues Shadow, but that doesn't change the fact that they are there, and an issue MM needs to fix.(Along with links not working to send all members through.)

Masseyf
10-20-2011, 10:27 PM
-I never seem to run out of thermo so I don't need a second level published.

Wow, even tho I've only a few levels, they're all capped or beyond! I don't feel like my level is done til the gauge starts screaming lol, not the best way to go about deciding whe to end ur lvl, but that's how it's been so far. And actually my last published one (circuitous), used north of 150% thermo and very little went on decor o.O



abusive when you force someone to go into another level of yours.

Freaking hate that! Recently gave praise to someone on their great level before realising he linked into another random lvl of his :s went back and left a "not cool" comment :p (tempted to boo, and I rarely boo... Think I will boo from now on, if u chuck me into a random lvl to whore ur play count up, boo to u!!)


And why on earth are they so **** buggy anyway? I don't see why (from a coding pov) there are so many issues with it, it's just sending a request to load into another level, perhaps with a small amount of data being carried forward. They really aren't giving the game the attention it deserves.

julesyjules
08-15-2012, 01:37 PM
Just bumping this thread, as I'm having trouble with these again, compounded by the fact I'm now using sackbots as the player and this seems to make things even more unstable. I know my setup works for me and one tester (only on his second play through) but 3/5 players so far have come up against locked links. Humph. Any new tricks surfaced in the last few months to get these flipping things to work right?

julesyjules
08-15-2012, 06:45 PM
Been playing around and it seems my sackbot player avatar isn't able to activate a level link when it's stood right in front of it. Anybody know the score?

Kalawishis
08-15-2012, 10:02 PM
Just bumping this thread, as I'm having trouble with these again, compounded by the fact I'm now using sackbots as the player and this seems to make things even more unstable. I know my setup works for me and one tester (only on his second play through) but 3/5 players so far have come up against locked links. Humph. Any new tricks surfaced in the last few months to get these flipping things to work right?
I've never really had trouble with locked level links. Is this glitch only for non-sub levels? I've used a level link twice in my levels, both linking to a movie sub-level. The level links were activated by logic and not the player, and I didn't have much trouble with locking. I mean, sometimes the game would stop and not let me go to my pod (forcing me to quit) but I never saw a locked sign.
However, this thread scares me. The level series I'm working on will use tons and tons of level links (it will be split into parts, which will be split into one main accessible level and two sub levels). So now, I've just decided to use the emit/destroy technique as much as I can.

julesyjules
08-15-2012, 11:41 PM
I'm thinking now of publishing them linked but separate rather than sub. Apart from borking the scores for anyone who doesn't get a working link and spreadin the reviews/heart count across three levels, neither of which is a biggie , is there any reason I haven't thought of that would make this a bad idea?

CCubbage
08-16-2012, 12:56 AM
It sounds like a decent idea. 3 levels at once would work better in the cool pages system, but some could go into them in the wrong order....

It's too bad level links were never perfected. We had the same issues when releasing Hansel & Gretelbot way back at the games release. We decided to publish the same as you stated above. It went well... Even if someone didn't link to the next level they could simply go into the next level separately

fullofwin
08-16-2012, 01:11 AM
I think it's a good idea. As you know I have a knack for breaking levels and this way I won't need to start from the very beginning to experience the full epicness of your work. :)

Ali_Star
08-16-2012, 09:40 AM
Could you not eject the player from the controlinator, so that you can activate the level link that way?

julesyjules
08-16-2012, 10:01 AM
Yeh, you could but it still might be locked, and ejecting looks a bit sloppy in the context of the level I've put together.

Ali_Star
08-16-2012, 01:42 PM
Hmmmmm. I'll be using level links (3 or 4) for my next level, with sackbots.... so I'm slightly concerned now that it won't work. My controlable sackbots are actually completely separate to your sackthing, so I'm guessing I could used the method I posted before.

Rogar
08-16-2012, 03:39 PM
I'm thinking now of publishing them linked but separate rather than sub. Apart from borking the scores for anyone who doesn't get a working link and spreadin the reviews/heart count across three levels, neither of which is a biggie , is there any reason I haven't thought of that would make this a bad idea?

I think scores will be per level, working link or not. Surely links to non-sublevels won't pass along the score, otherwise it would be easy to get the highscore on any level by linking in with 4 million points.

julesyjules
08-16-2012, 05:35 PM
Yep, you 're right, it only occurred to me a few hours after I published. I'm probably going to whack in a couple of scoreboards or go back to the sub option. Is undecided.

julesyjules
11-23-2012, 11:19 AM
This is directed more at the Spotlight Hub guys, but if anyone has any tips please feel free.

Spotties, have you discovered any new tricks to help stabilise the links while doing your hubs? The last few I've played have an emit system, is there a practical reason behind that or just a style choice?

Flyingpotaotoman
11-24-2012, 03:16 PM
I use level links for the soul purpose of helping my less off friends get the recognition and plays they deserve. As you know, there are plenty of fantastic creators out in craft-world, who are creating marvelous contraptions and everything of the sort, but they just are unable to find the fan base to ever get any of their publications the viewership it should get. What I do, is whenever my friend finishes their level, I publish a level link on my earth titled "_______: Friends Level Link", and it transfers you to their publication. Typically, all they need is a little "Boost" to get there level started, and then they are able to fly away like the graceful butterfly they are :) I find this to be a great way to boost up the typically cluttered cool pages, which is full of copied bomb survivals and sub-par platformers. Also, I just like to be a help to my friends, since its the least I can do, because I would never have gotten to where I am today on LBP without them.

For an example of one of these levels, do you all remember this awesome "Angry Birds" remake, made by the very wonderful BladeBison? http://lbp.me/search?q=Bladebison
When he originally published that level, it only got around 40ish plays after a day. It was a real shame to be honest, since it was the most accurate remake I have ever played. It felt JUST like the real game, it was crazy. Anyway, after playing it, I invited him into my pod, and he was fairly upset about it not getting anywhere, since he put so much work into the level. I told him to trust me, and to delete the level, than afterwards republish it. Although he was hesitant, he didn't have much to lose, so he went with it. Lucky enough for him, the level link was an instant success, giving him the boost he needed, and he soon went from only having 40 plays in one day, to being the top level on the cool pages, topping over 35,000 total plays.
This process of "Level Linking" is a great way for more well off creators to give back to not only the community, but to their friends as well. It helps get the great, unknown creators more recognition, and in the long run, is just a fantastic way to make someones day just a little more green :)