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  1. #1

    Default Close Encounters of the Herd Kind



    Yes, another UFO level. I know, I know... everybody is making them. But this level isn't about blowing stuff up or abducting sheep, but about... herding sheep.

    The level is a multiplayer versus game. It takes place on a big map full of fields and other countryside stuff. Each player has their own coloured pen in one of the corners of the map. The goal is to fly around to scare the sheep into your pen. No tractor beams or lasers, just sheep who flee at the sight of all things alien.

    You get 10 points every 5 seconds for every sheep in your pen, so the more sheep you have the more points you'll get. The game gets a little more strategic when you realise that you can also sneakily herd sheep OUT of your opponents' pens to stop them from getting points. Do you start by herding those sheep closest to you into your pen to get an early lead, or head a bit further away to steal sheep nearer your opponents and then spend the rest of the game defending?



    Cool stuff in this level:
    • A huge map split into four quarters, with 12 fields, 4 pens, a river, a road and 40 cute and cuddly sheep.
    • UFO's with a special Sonic Pulse weapon that is used to push fellow UFOs away when they try to steal your sheep.
    • Cars made by c_mckamey (please give him all the credit for these, not me), which drive along the road, stop and then blast their horns if sheep are blocking the way. As anyone who has ever seen a sheep/been to Wales will know, the sheep will stay there forever, causing almighty traffic jams and a lot of frustrated drivers...
    • A 3-layered level boundary collision system. No invisible walls or anything annoying like that. When you reach the edge of a map, first the camera will stop, then your UFO will slow down to a stop. If you get pushed outside, you'll be pushed back into the level.




    Interesting facts about this level:
    • This is about the 50 billionth version. It originally started out as more of a deathmatch with weapons and powerups until I decided to focus it on something simple (i.e. herding sheep). Then the map I made was twice as big as this one, with multiple roads and junctions which the cars slowed down for and gave way to other cars. Needless to say the thermo (and lag) couldn't handle it. I also made a version with 2 teams, red and blue, where you'd have 2 players per team, but then went with this smaller map and made it 1v1v1v1.
    • The level icon is a recreation of my alarm clock. Yes... I love sheep.
    • No sheep were harmed during the making of this level, despite several people who visited during the creation and suggested the sheep should "get run over" and "drown in the river". Those cruel individuals know who they are.




    Awesome people who helped out:
    • c_mckamey - He made all the cars, most of the car logic and even made some complicated team select logic that I didn't end up using.
    • Shadowriver - Help with the level boundary logic and playtesting.
    • coasterfreak1235 - Help with scoring (I think?) and other stuff too probably. I forget.
    • Chimpanzee - Feedback and suggestions.
    • BasketSnake - Feedback and (mostly crazy/stupid/rubbish) suggestions.
    • tanrockstan34 - Helped somehow with something. Probably feedback.
    • DRMontez - came up with the level name!


    And finally...
    Here's a picture of the entire level map. Click on it to see it fullsize!




    So, go and have a play, and make sure you're with some friends (although it can be played single player if you want to practise first). It is online multiplayer only, so don't bother attempting to play it with local multiplayer (I wonder how long it'll be before the first "dis lvl is broken" comment?). I'm open to feedback and suggestions, mostly about things that could be tweaked rather than additional features.

    Have fun!
    Last edited by Nuclearfish; 02-13-2011 at 06:06 PM.


  2. #2

    Default

    Looks incredible, I have it queued and ready for when I get home!
    Try my level Wailing Caverns, I'm always looking for some feedback and suggestions!

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  4. #3
    Trumma Trumma Alec's Avatar
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    Default

    Left an in-game review but I'll post it here too incase it disappears in all the other reviews:
    Quote Originally Posted by CANDY_KING_ALEC (Me)
    This is probably the best versus game I've played! Fantastic idea, never seen anything like it before and great fun to play! Kids, this is how a real versus level is meant to be! Thank you for a fantastic level to play!
    Seriously this was a hell lot of fun!

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  6. #4
    oogady boogady robotiod's Avatar
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    Default

    I suck at this level 2900.
    The only time I won was when you were busy taking photos and I stole your sheep XD

    Great level and I hearted it

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  8. #5
    Sackperson Private julesyjules's Avatar
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    Default

    Queued. Looking at the pics, I can say they are the best sheep ever.

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  10. #6

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    Looks lovely, I'm queueing it right now. Is that how you spell 'queueing'? (Queuing is definitely wrong, so I suppose so.)
    Fancy directing one comedy sketch, and then proceeding to add sound effects to a second? You can with Director's Cut! Take it from me - it's quite good!

    I also have a versus level that might be fun. It features what I hope are some unusual creatinator weapons. Try it out if you like. Or don't. Up to you really.

    And finally, I have a new level that showcases a 3D Third-Person camera. It has the rather inventive name 3D Third Person Robot Escape. It's pretty short and pretty fun.

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  12. #7
    Wut? Mr_T-Shirt's Avatar
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    Default

    Always admire your work Nuclearfish, this was a nice little versus level. Great visuals, controls and Sheep! Looks like you worked hard on this, so I hope you get your just deserts.

    Hearted and rated
    Oh, hai.


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  14. #8

    Default

    Haha, I see Bakscratch! That was random... Anyway, queued up!
    I'm the one who gripped you tight and raised you from perdition.

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  16. #9

    Default

    A few of my suggestions: When the level ends a big shadow comes down from the north blocking the entire map. This would be the mothership. Ranchers that spray their shotguns everywhere. Abducting cars and sheep for bonus points.

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  18. #10

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    Thanks for the geat comments so far everyone.

    Quote Originally Posted by robotiod View Post
    I suck at this level 2900.
    The only time I won was when you were busy taking photos and I stole your sheep XD
    Better get practising then.

    Quote Originally Posted by julesyjules View Post
    Queued. Looking at the pics, I can say they are the best sheep ever.
    ALL sheep are the best sheep ever.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jonny_Segment View Post
    Looks lovely, I'm queueing it right now. Is that how you spell 'queueing'? (Queuing is definitely wrong, so I suppose so.)
    Queuing is actually correct.

    Quote Originally Posted by Super_Clone View Post
    Haha, I see Bakscratch! That was random... Anyway, queued up!
    Yeah, he joined whilst I was taking photos with robotoid.

    Quote Originally Posted by BasketSnake View Post
    A few of my suggestions: When the level ends a big shadow comes down from the north blocking the entire map. This would be the mothership. Ranchers that spray their shotguns everywhere. Abducting cars and sheep for bonus points.
    Like I said - crazy and stupid. I'll take back rubbish, they are good ideas, just not very... practical.

    Quote Originally Posted by Alec View Post
    Left an in-game review but I'll post it here too incase it disappears in all the other reviews:

    Seriously this was a hell lot of fun!
    Thanks for the nice review, glad you enjoyed it!

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr_T-Shirt View Post
    Always admire your work Nuclearfish, this was a nice little versus level. Great visuals, controls and Sheep! Looks like you worked hard on this, so I hope you get your just deserts.
    Oh yes. The one thing I've learnt is I'm never making another big versus game like this again, it's so much harder (and bigger) than I thought it would be. Was to fun to make but very difficult to make it as fun to play as possible. And I reckon I deleted about a week's worth of work on this, it's so frustrating to spend ages on something only to completely redo or get rid of it because it isn't working quite right. Worth it all in the end though.

  19. #11
    Junior Sackperson Jayhawk_er's Avatar
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    Default

    Haha just the idea of herding sheep with U.F.O.'s sounds awesome to me! I'll have to find someone online to give this a shot with, usually I just use my little brother. This looks hilariously awesome though!

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  21. #12

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    You really only need to read the bigger words lol.

    Ok WOW, this has to be the best level i have played on LBP2, i played by myself and i still had alot of fun, its original looks, stunning and game play is Amazing.
    I cant wait to get together with some friends and have a blast on this level, Also the sound design was awsome.
    Even down to the little details like random traffic, was genious, things like that sets of the feel of this great versus game.

    The level for me was one EPIC win.

    Thanks for sharing.

    now i dont even want to you to F4F mine lol, this embarrases me.
    Last edited by steadler; 02-10-2011 at 03:51 AM.

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  23. #13
    Sackperson Private

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    This was pretty fun & looked great. I need to play it with 4 people though, 'cause I bet it's a blast. Tell c_mckamey that his cars total awesome winnage.

    Only thing I could ask for is pressing X to go faster so I can dart over to rival pens.

    Just a suggestion-not a complaint.

    I like your arena pic here too. Good marketing

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  25. #14

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by NinjaMicWZ View Post
    Only thing I could ask for is pressing X to go faster so I can dart over to rival pens.

    Just a suggestion-not a complaint.
    Hmm... good idea, but I reckon there's enough pressure from rivals attacking your pen as it is, especially with 4 players. Don't really want to make it any quicker cause a lot of the fun comes from sneaking into rival pens rather than zooming over there.

    I like your arena pic here too. Good marketing
    Thanks, glad you like it! I made it from about 16 different pictures all merged together.

  26. #15

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    I have to admit when I first heard the concept for the level I was unsure. The first time I jumped into a U.F.O. and started pushing the sheep around all my doubts were removed. Excellent gameplay, excellent environment, and super fun with a pod full of friends. If you haven't already, you need to play this. If you have played it, you need to play it again.

    -Clay

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  28. #16

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    Ok, Mr. Nuclearfish (if that IS your real name) - I gave this a go last night. Unfortunately, had to play by myself..... which is a shame....

    THIS GAME ROCKS!

    I wish there was a permenant list you could build in LBP2 for games that you pop into every time you have multiple players - this would be at the top of my list. The concept is so simple, yet brilliant. Easy to figure out, but yet filled with strategy. I can see friends getting together on their PS3's just to have a night of this.

    The graphics are clean, you're obviously a master at using decorations in ways they were never intended - and coming up with settings that are gorgeous to look at.

    The UFO's are stunning - the way they glow and hover over the fields is great to look at. I'm going to try to find some people to play this with tonight - I had a blast just playing by myself trying to corral as many sheep as I could at once. I could only imaging how much fun this is to play with 4 people that are practiced up in the art of sheep herding.

    Unfortunately, I tried to think of some ways to improve it - but it's just so darned polished. You're far better visually than I am, so I'm not even going to try to give input on aesthetics... although it would be pretty funny if the sheep could get run over by the cars.
    F4F Participant
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  30. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by CCubbage View Post
    Unfortunately, had to play by myself..... which is a shame....

    I had a blast just playing by myself trying to corral as many sheep as I could at once.
    It's a bit of a shame versus levels don't have the normal scoreboards, because playing by yourself can be quite a fun challenge.

    ...you're obviously a master at using decorations in ways they were never intended...
    Heh, thanks. Although it was a bit of luck actually, I did use the UFO decoration (as I now call it) just to add a bit of detail and then noticed the shape made a perfect UFO on its own. What its intended use actually is I have no idea...

    although it would be pretty funny if the sheep could get run over by the cars.
    Noooooo why does everybody say this??? I do love hearing suggestions and stuff.... but why does most of the feedback I get involved killing innocenet fluffy animals? You cruel person.
    They do sometimes get run over actually if the cars don't slow down in time. It doesn't seem to bother them very much though, they just get pushed out of the way and resume minding their own business.

    Anyway, thanks for playing, glad you enjoyed it!

  31. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nuclearfish
    They do sometimes get run over actually if the cars don't slow down in time. It doesn't seem to bother them very much though, they just get pushed out of the way and resume midning their own business.
    Fair enough.... but maybe just give them a bit of a limp?

    I've said enough....
    F4F Participant
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  32. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by CCubbage View Post
    Fair enough.... but maybe just give them a bit of a limp?

    I've said enough....
    Lol. They don't have any legs anyway.

  33. #20

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    Took me quite a while to finally leave some feedback here

    This is definitely one of the best online multiplayer levels out there to date. The gameplay mechanics are simple, intuitive and fun, but herding the sheep in an efficient way can still be quite challenging - and rewarding, if done right. You should really add a local multiplayer version, with a zoomed out one-screen map, because I'd love to play this level with my local friends.

    The visuals and the theme are both very appealing. I love the detailed scenery and the traffic system. I've already mentioned this in the chat, but I'll say it again: I'd really make the straw blocks affected by the UFO shockwave. I think it shouldn't cause too much lag, as it would boil down to 3-5 logic elements on a chip. This would enable for some entirely new tactics; block off a whole side of your or an enemy pen (which would both have advantages and disadvantages), blocking off certain bridges, etc.

    Anyways, outstanding versus level, and definitely a must-play for any group of online players.

  34. Thanks!


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