View Full Version : HEIST: The Midnight Star

01-06-2009, 01:19 AM
Help your team make history by stealing the Midnight Star, the worlds largest diamond! Avoid Cameras and guards, in over 18 rooms. Solve puzzles to open shortcuts - and unlock special rewards for extreme stealth!

Yes its finally done, my current reason d'etre, HEIST: The Midnight Star

I urge you all to go see if 3 days of solid work was worth it (hopefully yes)

oh, and good luck!

PSN: Mrgenji
Level Name: HEIST: The Midnight Star

Ill offer feedback to the first few who offer it to me, I dont want to sound vague but I dont really want to say ill do X amount and then not do them all :(

Have fun everyone!

(I am no longer giving F4F on this level, take a look at HEIST 2 (in my sig) if you want F4F)

01-06-2009, 03:33 AM
Lots of stuff in this level!

+ I liked the introduction with the little story elements.
+ Some good ideas with the searchlights mechanics.
+ Some of the rooms are well designed.
+ The ending where you have to take the diamond is cool, but it's hard to know what detected you and what switch turned off. Maybe add a camera that zoom out the whole zone, so you can see better what happens.

- There is a censored text near the start. Try to play online, you will see it. You won't see it if you play from your creation planet.
- You should add some checkpoints through your level, I had to make some parts 2-3 times because I died before hitting another checkpoint.
- It's not always very clear whetre you have to go. Some rooms have too much stuff in them, making it hard to see where to go or what you have to do. Maybe add some text to point in the right directions?
- The alarm sound from metal gear was a little over-used. I keep hearing it in the background at some parts, event if I was not detected by a searchlight.

I hope it helps! :)

I would like to have some feedback on my new level too.
The link is in my signature. Thanks!

01-07-2009, 03:04 AM
Okay, I went in and played this several times. Twice by myself, once with another player.

Here's the skinny:

I really enjoyed it. Story was cool, and I thought the additional puzzle elements for more points were fun - and fit nicely into the theme. Also, the way you set off alarms and had to then turn off switches to get through certain doors was unique.


+ Unique story. Visuals kept nicely with the theme throughout the game
+ I liked the idea of "getting caught" and doors closing as a result
+ Optional areas you could get to through puzzle solving was nice.
+ The puzzle to get the diamond out was well-thought-out and made sense.


- Even though you had the switches, since you could simply turn off a switch there was very little feeling of peril. One thing that could probably make this game better is if the guards maybe fired at you if you were caught. Also, some other type of trap that occurred when you were caught may also help. Probably just a little tweaking in this area.
- I'm not sure what you would do about this, but in multiplayer when one of us set off an alarm but the other was already through a door which then closed it seemed we were just stuck until one of us killed ourselves. Not a huge deal, but for multiplayer could be a problem.
- There is an area in the first part where the text was edited and so only contained asterisks. (after entering the building).

All in all, a great level. I enjoyed it. 4 stars and a heart.

Edit: additional info. I agree with most of what the above reviewer said, however my personal preference was that I enjoyed the "I don't know exactly where to go and I better explore a little" element. It fit with the theme of the game. Also, I thought it was really cool once I figured out there were sometimes a couple different ways I COULD go based on studying the environment (for instance, I could either go into a room and solve the moon rover puzzle OR I could just jump down to the next floor). For some players this may not have been a good thing, but it was one of my favorite aspects of the game.

01-07-2009, 06:02 PM
Thanks for the feedback both

some changes have been made:
* The "this way to the diamond" signs have been lit up, making them clearer for players who are lost
* Now when you step through a door it'll be open permanently, allowing easier 2-player games
* You now get 6 score bubbles for each alarm you didn't trip, these are awarded at the end
* Fixed some minor faults - Censored text, a door that wouldn't open and other small things
*the [Master Thief] Level has been removed, Im currently thinking of another reward for a perfect heist

01-07-2009, 06:43 PM
Nice. Sounds great. I'm gonna go back and try it again tonight. Did you put any note in your level description about the rules? (not setting off alarms). Could give players a goal to hit before they start which could add a little intrigue (If I knew I was going to get more points at the end I would definately be MUCH more careful and even play multiple times to perfect).

01-07-2009, 06:52 PM
Err I think theres already a note in there, I'll go check now, if not I'll add one

EDIT: how dark is it for you? it should be dark but it never seems to be, then again the brightness on my TV is screwed

01-07-2009, 06:55 PM

I just played your level. Here are my thoughts.

+ Looks ok, keeps a theme throughout. Your use of the same materials keeps things clean and simple, yet looking nice
+ Well designed, it all flowed nicely, hardly any backtracking or repeated areas.
+ The enemys are original.
+ The stealth parts are good, I really like the security guard idea with the torch. The later camera parts are also cool.
+ I found a shortcut. I dont know whether this was intended or not. But very cool either way.

- Your speech bubble in the room with the moving guard comes up ********************* there must be a moderated word in there some where.
- Hide your switches and sound effects
- Slowdown in the lift with all the prize bubbles. You can't really see the rooms around, which would have been a cool look at whats to come
- I did'nt get any clue what the room with the monitors and sleeping guard did I noticed the red and green lights, but did'nt have a clue what to do.
- I did'nt get to see what the magic mouth at the end said.
- Very little story, what was started, never really continued.
- Theres not enough notification to the player when switches etc are pulled.

I enjoyed this level. I always kept going to find out what you had in store next. It was well designed, looked ok and was obviously thoughtout. I died at the last diamond section, but wanted to finish so immediatly restarted.

A good job

01-07-2009, 07:09 PM
Err I think theres already a note in there, I'll go check now, if not I'll add one

EDIT: how dark is it for you? it should be dark but it never seems to be, then again the brightness on my TV is screwed
There may be and I missed it. My bad, if so.

01-07-2009, 08:20 PM
thanks for more feedback - all is welcome :)

- Your speech bubble in the room with the moving guard comes up ********************* there must be a moderated word in there somewhere.

Ive changed this over and over...all it says is "Doors with red lights can't be opened from this side"

any idea why it keep censoring that?

- Hide your switches and sound effects

ah bugger must have missed some, I always do - trust me if they were all visible you wouldn't be able to see the level ^^

- Slowdown in the lift with all the prize bubbles. You can't really see the rooms around, which would have been a cool look at whats to come

yep I hate that, its 'cause of the bubbles i've noticed...perhaps ill remove them...

- I did'nt get any clue what the room with the monitors and sleeping guard did I noticed the red and green lights, but did'nt have a clue what to do.

thats just background really, the only thing to do in that room is flip the switch and avoid him when hes awake

- I did'nt get to see what the magic mouth at the end said.

if you triggered an alarm it tells you that you get more points for not hitting any, ive changed the timing so it appears a good 5 seconds before the scoreboard now

- Theres not enough notification to the player when switches etc are pulled.

theres a green light on all the switches to show if the doors are opened - I could add a sound effect I suppose

+ I found a shortcut. I dont know whether this was intended or not. But very cool either way.

there is 1 short cut in most rooms with security...if its not one of these then its an added bonus =P

- Jump on the mask to get quickly to the hanging box in the 2nd room
- drag the box from the roof of that room to jump the barrier in the next room
- the whole moon exhibit puzzle (ok puzzle might be a bit of a strong word for it)
- jump into the display case in the underwater exhibit
- topple the vases acme style in the vase room
- the whole crate + coffin thing
- A vent in the room with the large crate you have to raise

..... I think thats it

01-07-2009, 08:47 PM
When I said feedback to the player I was a little vague. I meant sound effects yes, but specifically the part where you raise the crate in the basement by stepping on the red switch whilst avoiding the camera. I thought I had to hit the switch once and something would open, I did'nt realise it was raising the crate slowly till I had gone back up the lift, looked around the area, and returned to step on it again. It was then I noticed it was off the floor!

01-07-2009, 10:16 PM
i was going 2 play ur level but i can't find it, u have any ideas of what i might put into the search, cuz i've tried all combos of ur name and the level name

01-07-2009, 10:45 PM
hmm odd, its around usa area

I found it on page 6 after searching "heist", the icon is a sackboy against a black background

01-07-2009, 11:04 PM
ok i played it, and i got 2 say that what i played was awesome! the way u made ur level was real good, felt like a real bank, and i liked the locked door by camera activation system

the only thing i had a problem with, and this isn't ur fault but one of ur speech bubbles has the bad word astricks in it, might want 2 look at that, and i couldn't figure out what to do when i got 2 the locked door with the sleeping cop, i pulled all levers and nothing would happen, but what i've saw was awesome, 5/5

01-07-2009, 11:19 PM
*cry* Ive written and rewritten than censored bit, ive recreated the mouth in case it was a bug....

all it says is "Doors with lights cant be opened from this side"

but they censor it every time.....

01-07-2009, 11:22 PM
*cry* Ive written and rewritten than censored bit, ive recreated the mouth in case it was a bug....

all it says is "Doors with lights cant be opened from this side"

but they censor it every time.....

well this game has a weird censoring system, u should see the list of words that have been deemed censored list, urs might be in there

01-08-2009, 12:58 PM
huh apparently its the word opened....as in "opened"

how stupid is that....

01-08-2009, 02:08 PM
If my memory serves pene is a naughty word in Italian, although I might just be thinking of the pasta.

01-08-2009, 06:01 PM
well this game has a weird censoring system, u should see the list of words that have been deemed censored list, urs might be in there
Maybe for now you can write "Doors with lights won't open from this side"

01-08-2009, 10:16 PM
This level has some pretty original puzzles, but I had to play it 3 or 4 times to get to the end. I got stuck for a little while on the puzzle with the guard in the doorway because I couldn't figure out how to open the door until I restarted and saw the area above that you can swing to. In the room with the boxes, The first thing I did when I got to the little box up on top on the right was pull it off onto the ground screwing up that puzzle, and then I couldn't figure out what to do in the room below, so I restarted and did the box puzzle. When I finally got to the room with the diamond I found a bit of a flaw, the jetpack behind the glass wall can be grabbed through the wall before pulling the switch on the left, eliminating the difficulty of the platforming. My last complaint is that when I got the diamond to the roof, I got in the box with the diamond, so I was stuck and unable to complete the level when the lid closed. (So close!)

Keeps to a good style
Has nice original obstacles and puzzles.
Level has a good look to it, good use of lighting and sticks to the theme well

Some of the puzzles have workarounds or can be broken
Couldn't figure out the non-shortcut after the room with the box puzzle
Got stuck in the diamond crate and unable to finish!

01-09-2009, 07:22 PM
I liked the concept of this level as soon as I read teh description, and as soon as started playing I was happy it was kind of what I expected. There was a really bad slow down though when collecting the score bubbles, not sure if it was just me or it's always like that. I did restart it a few times (because I wanted to try and make it through without being seen, and also because I managed to push the crate after the first light swingy bit off the side and couldnt get over) but in the end gave up that approach because when I was in the vent (jumping the electric) the guard seemed to some how spot me?
The puzzles were nice, and I would definetly go back to this level if only to see the rest of it. There was one room with crates where I managed to spawn a small box with an arrow on it, but couldn't work out what to do.
The main problem I have with this level is I couldn't do it!

So I get into the room with the diamond, dodge the top most light as much as I can, drop my current jet pack and fall into the next one, my sweaty fingers are almost upon it and I can see myself making a dash for the roof when BAM. Some electric gate slides into the side of my face. Now I tried this 8 times, always resetting the top most alarm and the same thing kept happening. I could see the switch on the right needed pulling back down but couldn't get into the room, there was glass in the way. Maybe I'm just being stupid but I was hovering about in there for a good 10 minutes trying to work it out. So I died. By that time I didn't feel like restarting.
so that's why I'm here now.

Overall I liked the level design, there was a lot of detail and I could tell alot of work went into the rooms and it almost had a good museumy feel to it. The reason why I say almost is only because of the scale. When I walk into the Natural History Musem in London the hallway is huge, and some times in your level it all feels a bit cramped. My favourite part was the lunar lander, which is funny because it reminds me of the level I'm working on now lol. Although some of the timing is tricky, I wouldn't expect anything less from a stealth mission, nothing seemed impossible (except getting stuck in the vent) and I'm sure with enough practice it could be aced without getting spotted. There's replay value here aswell, aswell as it being multipath (I think) the first play I dropped down by the second guard, and the second I did the Lunar. All in all I give this 4/5 stars because I couldn't complete it and a few minor level design issues. Good level!

01-09-2009, 10:03 PM
theres a camera down the bottom right looking directly at the diamond, the trip is the RAISE the switch on the left, making the camera below you look at the diamond - then use that as a platform to the blocked switch

as for the scale thing, i know what you mean - problem is very little planning went into this lol, I was only a room ahead of myself all at any one time. Also a large room would need alot of security to cover it - which means alot of switches, and triggers and chains and...urg. I think im just lazy.

01-11-2009, 02:53 AM
Really cool, overall look and concept are great.

Should add a 'no more people' sign by the window enterence, was playing online when 3 people joined in the 3rd room, they had no clue what was happening.

Best concept room was the lunar rover room, simple but looked great.

2nd time around I got stuch in the room with the watchman asleep in the chair, I pulled the lever but nothing would happen, it looked like it was not going down all the way.

Good job.

Level: Sack-plunk

01-12-2009, 08:06 PM
I don't know if it's me being a noob or what, but in the room with the sleeping guard, I pull the lever but nothing happens. Is the door to the left supposed to open?
I've restarted twice, and I'm not alerting the guard so the switch is staying down

01-12-2009, 08:12 PM
urg I thought I fixed this...everytime i republish...new bugs.....

the door to the far left should reopen

i'll go have a look now

It's fixed, sorry everyone who had to put up with a broken level - the dam thing is one (very large) object and editng one small part sometimes breaks other parts

once again sorry

01-13-2009, 11:27 AM
Hey Man, I played your level through, almost all the way, and something silly that 95% of the time i'm sure doesn't happen, happened. i was dropping the diamond into the box when the guy started talking. i didnt move, so the box squished me, and i respawned inside the last room, with no way to get back out the window.

also, in the beginning if you run all the way over, you can fall down the crack next to the left edge of the level.

really great ideas, and a fun level to play, maybe theres something wrong with my game or something, but when i was picking up certain score bubbles it would slow the world down for a second. maybe its because you have them glued together, or to something, im not sure. it didnt affect playability however.

Some of the security i thought was too easy to get past, but you did such a good job making the music and stuff that it just made me think that i really was an awesome burglar. :)

4 stars and a heart from me, i really enjoyed this level a lot!

01-13-2009, 12:37 PM
hmm that diamond box is getting to be a problem now..think ill change how its done

ah and you say the security was easy but you still got caught ^^

thanks for the review, ill check out your improvements to technova later, havnt had time recently

01-13-2009, 12:44 PM
I like this level a lot, the detail is incredible and it's a really fun idea. The glowy glass at the start to make it look like there is light below was really neat, I also liked the part with the closet/warehouse it was really detailed and looked amazing.

I did find running into the lights a little unsatisfying, half the time it didn't seem to matter if I did or not. It being a stealth based level it seems to me there should be more of a consequence for getting seen than running back through the lights because it no longer matters if you get seen by them and then pulling a lever.

I gave it 5 stars because it was at 3, which is way to low, I believe it is a 4+ star level, well done! I will PM you suggestions.

01-13-2009, 12:46 PM
Maybe make the box close slowly (turning bolt set to slow or something).... either that, or just put a save point they pass by as they are bringing the diamond (you could force them into it with invisible barriers).

Love this level, by the way. Have gone back and played it several times. I know some other people were confused by the diamond area, but I enjoyed needing to stop and look around to figure out how it worked.

01-13-2009, 12:52 PM
Cheers for all the great words guys ^^ really makes my day

I think im just going to set the diamond crate to a prox switch on the scoreboard

if anyone cares HEIST 2 is about 70% done now - this time its a bit more extreme though, there will be deadly security (including lasers than kill you on contact) more stealth, more puzzles - and a boss battle that takes place on a giant wheel of fortune verses a corrupt casino owner who's channeling the spirit of two-face (or something like that...)

01-14-2009, 12:51 AM
Nice! Sign me up!

01-14-2009, 01:58 AM
Hey I just got done playing your level. I enjoyed it very much, tho i did find a few quirks.
1. was that you can get stuck in boxes, behind them, and in the box at the end with the gem, forcing you to retry again.
2. If you fall off the sponge thing you need to hop across the lights to get to in the second room, the sponge wont reset and you have to reset the level
3. if you die after retrieving the gem, the jet pack does not respawn and the door wont open again.

Other than those, the level was great :)

01-18-2009, 09:24 PM
Man, this is an amazing environment.... you even stickered the glass with the grid paper - NICE! The detail and realism of every object and room, and how much interactivity each one has is astounding. I'm even more impressed with the mechanical side of your level as well - the alarm system is fantastic, and all the little gadgets and switch activated everything you have here is awesome. I like having to disable the alarm myself, great idea!. This was totally reminiscent of a certain mission in Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory. The scant use of story and characters is spot on... beyond that the almost totally open approach to beating the level is immensely cool. I've never quite accomplished that in a level, and the fact you've done so with a "Little Big Home" level of detail and polish (better IMO) is pretty impressive. I love swinging from the lights and whatnot. I even like the detail on your guard characters - great way to give "spot lights" some character. Everything is just the right scale to fit sackboy, but still seem BIG.

I like how you get a few miliseconds of time when spotted to react, as the doors lower in real time. Nice touch, and takes the stealth in this level to the "huh? what was that?" level of MGS - where you can almost get spotted and still have time to duck out by the skin of your teeth.

Parachuting in here, is probably the best I've seen that done so far. The lunar landing room is awesome, and I love how you layered the terrain in conjunction with the moon crater stickers - that's a great eye for detail, and I'm very finicky about things like that. Alot of creators, even some great ones, just don't please me in the visual nuance aspect.

That's the best looking scoreboard I've seen btw... you should reaally consider using the MGS laser in this level for one more detail. At least around the diamond. I can send you one that's got adjustable colors, if you add me on PSN. It's sick.

There are a few things that bug me, like the pause when I get glued point bubbles. If you can unglue them and attach the ones that are supposed to be floating to strings, that would be great. I hate that it does that, but that's just a problem with the game. The elevator above the box with the arrows on it - flips out of control because of the two chains crossing each other - it kind of adds to the light hearted sillyness of this level by having that happen, but if it's not intentional you could fix it by just making the chains uncrossed. I also got the grab swing in the second room stuck up top on my first play - if you could do a little bit of adjusting right there to make sure it doesn't go too high, it would probably never get stuck.

I also got electrified in the vent after thr olly, by the electric glass that's in the diamond room because I flew against the wall. Just a little chunk of metal at the end would fix that.

There's also one little point sticking out from the lunar landing background right at the start of the level, and it's minor, but you can just corner edit it right off in half a second.

Great level, man, and it's convinced me to check out your other levels. I'm sure your work will only get even better with time, so I'll keep an eye out for your work.

01-18-2009, 09:39 PM
wow, that...I wasnt expecting - cheers for the great review, and for noticing those niggly bits that need work...It seems that work never ends

ahhh...I never knew it was the glue that caused the slowdown, I assumed it was too much happening at once

cheers for that tip ill go unglue them now

on the neverending road to perfection it seems.../sigh

(also sorry cartman, I thought I edited that out after the first warning - eek)

01-18-2009, 11:07 PM
Yeah, levels really are never done. I still edit my oldest levels routinely if I'm ever playing through and notice something, or get some good feedback on something I think would be worth changing or CAN change...

01-29-2009, 10:13 PM
This level is fun. I liked how you just assumed the role of this thief, and the characters were cute. I really felt like I was infiltrating a museum, good job on that. I saw a couple of different things I could have tried, and probably been sent on a slightly different path, cool for replay. The last room was by far the best. Great use of spotlighs. Keep it up!!

and thanks for the feedback on my Super Color Shooter level :)