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Project forums => Team Avalanche => Topic started by: Mayo Master on 2015-06-22 17:57:21

Title: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Mayo Master on 2015-06-22 17:57:21
Hi folks,

I just wanted to "confirm" that, as far as I'm concerned, the announcement of the FF7 remake pretty much cans the Team Avalanche project. Personally, I see very little point in continuing this endeavor. I'm not motivated to strive for a graphical overhaul with my very limited means (in hardware, software, talent, and time) as Square can deploy a team of very talented people for that, with all the resources to go with it. It's in their hands now, all we can do is hope for the best.
As for me, well it was a fun ride  :)  I certainly learned a ton of things in the process, so I'd never consider the huge amount of time I've spent on this as a waste. Maybe I should get started on a new project of my own then.
Thanks to all the people who provided support and feedback in all this time  :)
Cheers,

- Mayo

PS Doesn't mean that I'll be leaving qhimm forums though :P
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Sonikero on 2015-06-22 18:53:40
Square will make other type of remake. They will make a lot of changes and whatever more...

The fans want this remake because is much faithful.

I have seen this proyect today and i hope that you guys will continues with the proyect. Seriously.

I hope so :)
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Tom on 2015-06-22 21:14:05
I agree with Sonikero, the SE remake is a true remake, ground up.  TA is all about HighRes fields in the original game.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Mayo Master on 2015-06-22 21:49:37
In my opinion, if all you wish to have is a HD upscale of the original fields, you can find it already thanks to the project of yarLson (http://forums.qhimm.com/index.php?topic=15335.msg214684#msg214684). It's a very good project which has the distinct advantage of being complete (unlike the 2-3% of the project I've made in 2 years of hard work). Omzy also completed something very similar, just with other image filtering techniques, so you're welcome to check that too. Personally, I have not been interested in getting through the process of 3d modelling and rendering to yield an exact replica of what yarLson accomplished.

Instead, in my 3d modelling work, I wanted to bring out more details, and use mode advanced modelling and shading techniques to provide a more pleasing and coherent rendition of the fields, while trying to be faithful to the spirit of the original. I wasn't shying away from reinventing some portions of it. This is probably the same path that Square is going to take for the remake, except they have much better resources and much better artists to do it. That doesn't leave me with much (if any) motivation to go on.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Scrat on 2015-06-22 22:00:53
Well, I for one have learnt a lot, mainly from you Mayo and I certainly do not consider the project a waste of time just because square are doing it instead.

I have to admit I agree though there isn't much point carrying on, at least until we see how square do it, maybe after square's release there may still be a place for this mod.

I will enjoy playing through your sector 5 when it is added to 7th heaven and I would have liked to have seen your Nibelheim. I may still try to complete my scene, but only for two reasons. Firstly the experience of completing a scene and secondly so that I can say I added something to this community before square took up the challenge.

Thanks for your great contributions and your mentoring, its been invaluable. To be clear I am also not leaving qhimm. I will find other ways to be useful.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: EQ2Alyza on 2015-06-22 22:32:59
Sigh, I didn't want to see this stop. I don't believe the remake (which is initially just PS4) will be anything like what we're doing here. Seeing the old rendered 2D scenes done by your talent is what I consider the real remake, but that's just me.

I understand the massive scope of this project, but I always felt all scenes up until the party leaves Midgar could have been achievable and released as a demo showcase for what we'd consider a FF7 remake. It would have produced good advertising for Qhimm and Team Avalanche, and perhaps brought in the outside talent needed to continue the scenes past Midgar. Would something like that not even be considered? I hope it would  :|
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Tom on 2015-06-22 23:02:24
Plus in Q-Gears 3D fields ARE nice :)
You don't have to mess with layers or z index, just feed it to OGRE and your done

EDIT: Throw in some pre baked lighting, textures and it looks just like a prerendered background
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Ragna on 2015-06-22 23:17:32
And this is what I didn't want to hear (read) from you...
Everyone else explained perfectly the same I feel.

 :'(

I understand the massive scope of this project, but I always felt all scenes up until the party leaves Midgar could have been achievable and released as a demo showcase for what we'd consider a FF7 remake.
I hoped for this too.

Hah! Who knows? Maybe you will return to the project after the remake is out? :P
Or maybe they perfectly capture the original game's spirit and surprises us all with a "good enough" remake? (Or in emulation words: like what a good high-level emulation could do compared to the effort needed on a low-level one?)

You've done some amazing work anyway, and that's what counts after all. :)
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: obesebear on 2015-06-23 02:37:35
I've got a kind of similar project going on where we're trying to update the graphics, but we're focusing on models instead of backgrounds.   We've been going strong for a little over 6 years now, and we also had the discussion of stopping due to the remake.  However, I doubt the remake will take the place of the original.  The limitations of the media in 1997 allow you to turn the characters and scenes into whatever your imaginations see them as (kind of like reading a book).  The remake will no doubt use voice acting.  The models will no doubt animate infinitely better.  The backgrounds and events will be much more detailed, and a lot of the imagination we had to use playing the original will be lost.

But see, that's where projects like yours and mine shine.  We still get to play the old game, but with a much needed face lift. :)
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Mayo Master on 2015-06-23 04:29:07
Before the announcement was made, here was the best case scenario I had been hoping for:
With the small release of my sector 5 slums scenes, try to get on some "advertising campaign" in order to have people joining the project. As Kaldarasha and I sorely found out last year, merely advertising for TA can turn out to be a very difficult exercise (actually, back then most of the people outside qhimm had a very negative prejudice about it, with reaction ranging from "leave that game in the past where it belongs" to "nobody's ever going to join a project which is doomed to meet a Cease & Desist by Square at one point or another"). Anyway, the goal would have been to try to form a team of at least 10 productive people, shift up the gears and have a cruise speed of 10 scenes per year per person, and complete that in 5-6 years. That schedule would be pushing hard on everyone, and going at it with a professional attitude where deadlines would have to be set and met. And that would have been the very best case scenario.
I could see myself being committed to something like that if it were the only possibility to have some kind of "remake", but now its purpose would just be (at best) an attempt from an amateur to leave a mark which Square would have to surpass. Let's face it, it's not a kind of purpose which would have me motivated for working hard during the next 5 years, and I don't see that kind of scope motivating anyone else for that much time either. I'm not preventing anyone from working on it (hell, I can still be of advice on the modelling side), but personally I see very little point in it.

Of course, the remake will be different from what we do here. But why "being different" would necessary be "worse"? After all, the trilogy of the Lord of the Rings movies was an adaptation of the books, and I believe it was an adaptation for the better. In all my time working on TA, I've been often thinking "how can I make that scene actually better than what it was, and not just a an upscaled replica?". I would hope that idea of improvement would animate the devs. I believe that plenty of aspects can be made differently from the original, and better. For example, what if you could roam around the entire city of Midgar like in an open world game, where you could visit Sectors in the slums or on the Plate, whereas the original game didn't get you to see any of that? What if the game started around the times where Tifa finds Cloud on the train platform, and then you spend some time free roaming in Midgar doing small jobs before joining Avalanche for the Bombing mission? What if you'd carry out the first Bombing mission with Biggs, Wedge and Jessie as additional party members? All this would certainly be different from the original game, but wouldn't these changes actually be cooler? It's in the hands of Square to make things like that happen (or not), and in any case such changes are way beyond our capabilities.
 
I believe that many fans feel a sense of ownership over the game. The idea of being able to mod the game probably strengthened that feeling. It seems many are upset by the announcement of Square because it would deprive them of that sense of ownership, because a different version would not conform their own vision.  But the game has to change, in my opinion. A lot of elements in the original game were acceptable back then, but they would feel lousy now (examples: the split/merge of the characters for dialogs, random battles, how Cait Sith joins the party, the hard baked chibis in FMVs, etc.) - wouldn't we better off without these? I personally see no sense in sticking to every aspect of the original game (as a seasoned RPG player, I've always found it somewhat depressing that many players consider turn-based system - a transposition of old D&Ds mechanics - as the alpha and omega of gameplay). However, everybody can have a different opinion of what should be kept, what should be edited, what should be removed, what could be added (hell, maybe I should make a huge poll about it :P ). I think people fear having these decisions out of their hands. Personally, I do not have the pretension that what I can do would surpass what Square can do on the artistic side, so I prefer to just let go.

So, what now? I guess all we can hope for is that Square decides to interact with its fan as the development is underway, and look for constructive advice us fans would make.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: LeonhartGR on 2015-06-23 05:10:09
It would be nice to have this re-mastered edition by the qhimm forums option Mayo! Keep it up!

P.S.: Sonik, is that you? From twitch/YT? :P
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: drdaylight on 2015-06-23 05:50:07
I have seen your work a few weeks ago which is the reason I actually started playing FF7 / 8 (once) again. Sad to see you're not motivated to continue those types of projects anymore. However, it's understandable from your point of view.

The way I see it, the remake most likely will not be turn based and the story will probably be altered in some form or fashion. I would've liked to have seen more of your artistic style / talent in the game. Even after the remake is released, the old and new will have two completely different feels to it. With your artwork involved, it would've gave the game a better feel without ruining any of the original feel to it.

I'm tired. Probably didn't make too much sense. Oh well. Off to bed. Thanks for contributing your art into this game along with years of dedication!  8-)
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Tom on 2015-06-23 10:53:13
I always wanted to be able to roam around Midgar and see the other sectors that aren't available in the game :(
I have been making for the past 9 months a 3D model of Midgar for Q-Gears where you can roam the streets of Midgar but the amount of modeling that has to be done is enormous and I'm still only making the bridges connecting the sectors together.

What Mayo Master suggested is nice, the ability to have the other Team Avalance members as playable characters or starting off when Cloud wakes up from mako poisoning in the train station are great ideas and it would be nice to see SE implement them.

However I think that the new game won't replace the old as an "upgrade" but will be a new version with a bunch of cool new additions and gameplay changes.  :D
Both versions will have their pros and cons
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: cmh175 on 2015-06-23 13:31:24
I have to agree with Mayo. I'm psyched Square is doing an official HD remake, but also feel a bit of loss as it voids the need to heavily mod the original game. If the remake absolutely tanks than mod ideas can definitely be revisited, and hell with any luck the remake will be moddable too and give us a lot more to work with (it's only a timed PS4 exclusive, it'll see a pc release for sure). Smaller projects are certainly worthwhile, but the scope of this particular one is massive, and currently only led by a handful of artists. It's pretty understandable that there may not be a lot of motivation to carry on with this.

I started working on new HD character and npc models, as well as a few bosses. Starting out it looked pretty reasonable, until you realize there's about a 100+ models, as well as field objects (keys, boxes, treasure chests, save points) not to mention the monster enemy models alone that don't have a field or world counter part. It's easy to forget the scale of this game lol. In a sense I'm rather glad Square is doing this for us lol. I may finish those that are nearly done, but I'm interested in getting into my own designs now too.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Sonikero on 2015-06-24 01:23:01
It would be nice to have this re-mastered edition by the qhimm forums option Mayo! Keep it up!

P.S.: Sonik, is that you? From twitch/YT? :P

I dont think so xD
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: SpooX on 2015-06-24 21:42:42
Unfortunately Mayo, you worded the exact feeling I had since the news of the remake.
Unsure of what to make of it, since SE is very vague about what they will be doing. And looking at the massive scale they've build Midgar in, at least more realistic, it will be different from the original.
This could be either bad or good, only time will tell...

But what to do with project Avalanche?
 :-\
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: alloy on 2015-06-24 21:59:53
Dont let the remake news kill the passion you have for your art. Be it remaking ff7 scenes or whatever else. keep making stuff.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Shard on 2015-06-24 22:31:25
I've gotten similar feedback about the voiceover project. We ultimately decided that Squaresoft sucks and our voiceovers will be lightyears ahead of theirs, so we're continuing the project anyway. You should do the same.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Kaldarasha on 2015-06-25 18:40:27
I've gotten similar feedback about the voiceover project. We ultimately decided that Squaresoft sucks and our voiceovers will be lightyears ahead of theirs, so we're continuing the project anyway. You should do the same.

That's not the same. If you guys are lucky enough SE will hire some of you to voice the remake. But for Mayo and me is it pointless work because we won't be part of the games development. You see even if SE creates a medicore remake more people will play it because it is official. As example many Steam users do want mods but they are not ready to upgrade the game with an unofficial downpatch for that reason.
I will still do here and there a thing, and mainly I hope that QGears will become a great engine to create our own PSX styled games (I have a really good FF7 prequel in my head which let you see the plot of FF7 in a different light without to destroy the original game). Also I have now only very limited time for two years and the remake lets finally re-enjoy the game, because it has become only a project for me. The work which is needed to overhaul the game with a HD mod is too much. With the current announcement we need 20 high talented people and Aali to fix the light layer issue to have a release right in time before SE release the remake. I can't see that this will happening.
What we can do is to polish up the Background with Alien Skins Blow Up (the results are even better as the one of YarLson) and put a bit more handwork on them but that's all what should be done.

After all FF7 is only a game among other games so we shouldn't spend all of our life blood on it.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Mayo Master on 2015-06-25 18:44:41
As far as the art in concerned, I'm convinced that I don't have the tenth of the talent of any artist from Square, and I certainly don not have the same resources either. I believe I'd be delusional to think otherwise. I think Yusuke Naora doesn't need my input to do his job. Personally, even in the productions from Square that I didn't like (FF XIII series, mostly), I remained in awe of the quality of the visuals.

With the news of the remake, if I still have passion for the art, I don't find much point of spending my life blood (as Kaldarasha aptly said) on something which they can very easily surpass. As far as art and creativity go, it would make much more sense to me to spend time on making something of my own, on an different project.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Sega Chief on 2015-06-25 21:19:01
I would have encouraged you guys to keep up with making new backgrounds from scratch, because I always felt that they were the weakest part of the FF7 port and can only be properly solved with an actual re-render, but if you feel it's time to spend your energy on other projects then don't feel tied down; go for it!
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Tom on 2015-06-25 21:45:11
That's not the same. If you guys are lucky enough SE will hire some of you to voice the remake. But for Mayo and me is it pointless work because we won't be part of the games development. You see even if SE creates a medicore remake more people will play it because it is official. As example many Steam users do want mods but they are not ready to upgrade the game with an unofficial downpatch for that reason.
I will still do here and there a thing, and mainly I hope that QGears will become a great engine to create our own PSX styled games (I have a really good FF7 prequel in my head which let you see the plot of FF7 in a different light without to destroy the original game). Also I have now only very limited time for two years and the remake lets finally re-enjoy the game, because it has become only a project for me. The work which is needed to overhaul the game with a HD mod is too much. With the current announcement we need 20 high talented people and Aali to fix the light layer issue to have a release right in time before SE release the remake. I can't see that this will happening.
What we can do is to polish up the Background with Alien Skins Blow Up (the results are even better as the one of YarLson) and put a bit more handwork on them but that's all what should be done.

After all FF7 is only a game among other games so we shouldn't spend all of our life blood on it.

Q-Gears is complete enough for you to write a story of your own, you can even design you own brand new fields to explore places that weren't in the orininal game.  Also if you want to help with the project you are more than welcome.  Currently I am working on the "Finishing Touch" mod/project for Q-Gears that fixes little bugs and field script errors in the game and makes it look much more polished.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Salk on 2015-06-26 03:58:11
I see Square Enix show too often lack of talent to trust anything they are working on.

I trust your (Mayo Master), SpooX and other Qhimm residents' talents much more, to say the truth.

But I understand your decision and we can not only hope it won't be a disappointment.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: yarLson on 2015-06-26 04:20:07
As far as the art in concerned, I'm convinced that I don't have the tenth of the talent of any artist from Square, and I certainly don not have the same resources either. I believe I'd be delusional to think otherwise. I think Yusuke Naora doesn't need my input to do his job. Personally, even in the productions from Square that I didn't like (FF XIII series, mostly), I remained in awe of the quality of the visuals.

With the news of the remake, if I still have passion for the art, I don't find much point of spending my life blood (as Kaldarasha aptly said) on something which they can very easily surpass. As far as art and creativity go, it would make much more sense to me to spend time on making something of my own, on an different project.

Not to throw this completely off topic but alien skin blow up looks terrible in game. Lol I obsessed over these things for over a year although all I had to work with was my personal opinion. I agree with mayo though.. We have all known that the likelihood of this project teaching a finished state was slim to none.. But people learned here..

No artist wants to spend their entire career in the shadow of other works and we certainly don't want to compete with the skill resource and sheer collective attention that the remake will receive.. It's no artists desire to be overshadowed and largely ignored for their effort.. It's ludicrous to ask anyone to do so.

Now to say that we shouldn't pursue it is not my intent merely that one cannot be blamed or misunderstood for focusing their efforts in more profitable direction, both financially and otherwise.. After all its a waste to gain such a great talent and never developer something all your own.. So it is my deepest hope this project never a dies yet I know at the very least it will be on hiatus for a long long time.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: DLPB on 2015-06-26 15:40:24
Square may well have resources, but they're not going to recreate the original game - they're going to leave a ton of content out and it will not be the same game anyway.  The remake isn't a reason I'd personally have to quit but that's up to each person.

If this remake was sticking to the original and updating as necessary (which it should be doing but is not) then I'd agree this project is redundant.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Covarr on 2015-06-26 16:30:32
they're going to leave a ton of content out and it will not be the same game anyway.
To be fair, they haven't said anything about leaving content out, just about adding new content. I mean, they probably are going to leave some things out (especially combat-related), but it's silly to guess what or how much.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: DLPB on 2015-06-26 16:43:50
To be fair, they haven't said anything about leaving content out, just about adding new content. I mean, they probably are going to leave some things out (especially combat-related), but it's silly to guess what or how much.

There was someone in IRC who had read more.  But the interviews already have stated content is being dropped, even that "leak" guy has mentioned it.  But at the very least, it is not going to be the same game.  ATB and so on are not going to survive and that's among many things that fans actually want in a remake.  The remake will have nice graphics but it's not a replacement, so this project is still relevant imho.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Mayo Master on 2015-06-26 18:09:31
It's rather a combination of the project's feasibility, and where it would fit in the end.
I had enough time for contemplating that the project's chances of success were very slim: as I said, it would have required a very tough schedule for 10 productive artists for 5-6 years in the best case. With the current crew, the team is closer to 3 people producing on average 5 scenes per year, so we would have needed some serious "snowball" effect to have any hope of getting somewhere. We would have needed to gather a lot of interest to incite people to join the team.
At the end of it, if the only purpose of the project was an upscale of the graphics, the project would end up being redundant with Omzy's and yarLson's, not to mention the possibility for new image filtering techniques to emerge. What stimulated me was the possibility to go beyond that and alter the original to bring improvements. I was feeling that it was up to me and the team to eventually get some kind of "remake", and to be honest I've been feeling constrained in my creative process by many technical limitations (although, I was still ok with that framework). With Square going at it pretty much "without limitations", they can transcend the original much better than I. If the project were to continue, I feel it would fall into some kind of "mucky middle", halfway between a conservative vision (sticking to the original, where Omzy's and yarLson's find their purpose) and an evolving vision (Square's remake). It's too much work for something having so little purpose. If there were good odds of being able to complete it before Square's remake, I would have given it a shot, but that's not going to happen.
There was someone in IRC who had read more.  But the interviews already have stated content is being dropped, even that "leak" guy has mentioned it.  But at the very least, it is not going to be the same game.  ATB and so on are not going to survive and that's among many things that fans actually want in a remake.  The remake will have nice graphics but it's not a replacement, so this project is still relevant imho.
In the end, what you would have liked is a HD remaster (like what Square did for FFX), not a remake. I am personally a lot more interested in a remake than a remaster (even if I had the choice, as a creator). Maybe because I've always been particularly interested in the process: "take a concept/idea, analyze it, and transform it to make it better". Square may not do it like I would, but I'm totally cool with that.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: DLPB on 2015-06-26 21:47:15
Well, I wanted both... I wanted it to fix what needed fixing, rather than alter story, remove content, and remove systems...  that to me isn't even a remake.  If it is, it's a lazy one.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Mayo Master on 2015-06-26 22:32:08
Well, I wanted both... I wanted it to fix what needed fixing, rather than alter story, remove content, and remove systems...  that to me isn't even a remake.  If it is, it's a lazy one.
Right now, I do not think it is fair to say that, on many counts. I would prefer to discuss the changes brought by the remake once we know more about them, and even then, we're likely to disagree on their merits/flaws (since I would prefer the ATB to be replaced, and certainly not by a turn-based system).
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: StickySock on 2015-06-27 18:01:02
Square may well have resources, but they're not going to recreate the original game - they're going to leave a ton of content out and it will not be the same game anyway.  The remake isn't a reason I'd personally have to quit but that's up to each person.

If this remake was sticking to the original and updating as necessary (which it should be doing but is not) then I'd agree this project is redundant.
DLPB and I have the same view on what the original will be even though we differing levels of excitement for it.

The fact is, the remake is going to be drastically different from the original, and those that want the original with some TLC and few changes will still desire a mod such as Team Avalanche. In an ideal world, we could have both this mod to keep the game faithful to the original, and the remake to get the modernized take on it.

There is a very real possibility the remake is going to be completely crap like many of the posters here believe, and if that happens we will all come crawling back to beg modders to keep working on the original.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: cmh175 on 2015-06-27 22:10:19
Something that's being overlooked though is as Maya briefly mentioned this is a massive project, and at the moment TA is way too under staffed to reasonably complete this. It seems more like the main goal so far as been completing backgrounds in an attempt to attract more help, which hasn't gone well and is even more unlikely now with the remake happening. Personally I'd say with the final version of the Reunion and Kaldarasha's models coming the game's pretty much complete. Many of the upscaled backgrounds are really good and with a combination of them you can piece together a pack of really clear backgrounds. Paired with Kaldarasha's models everything looks pretty good together.

Otherwise down the line even if the new game tanks, maybe it'll be moddable on PC. I could definitely see us ripping models and backgrounds from it to import for the original too lol.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: EQ2Alyza on 2015-06-27 22:50:01
Well I always had intentions to try and promote these scenes across other social medias. I haven't been very swift in getting my projects done either, so I know the feeling of being "unstaffed." I was hoping what promotion could be done would bring in some help because I have seen new faces show up here over the past year that have been capable of modding this game very well. It all takes time, effort, and patience.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: anaho on 2015-06-28 20:35:45
I am very excited about the annoucement. I like doing 3D so there are no feelings of my side that my work was or is in vain. Quite the contrary I learned a lot.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: The Berserker on 2015-06-29 12:42:53
well that's a shame i was really looking forward for the midgar overhaul at least :(
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: anaho on 2015-06-29 20:44:26
I still have a lot unfinished scenes on my harddrive that I will finish. If I ever lose interest I will upload them so anyone can play with them.
Funny thing: The amount of scenes that are finished or started could have easily sufficed for the Bombing Mission. The problem for me always was that Spoox at least has had blockouts for a lot of the scenes and it is not known what has happened to them. So from my point of view we were not that understaffed ( of course we could need programmers and the more artists the merrier) but a little unorganized.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Mayo Master on 2015-06-30 15:40:00
If you feel we were unorganized, I'm accountable for that since I had taken the lead of the project. I managed TA with the following principles:
- My chief concern was how few we were, and that each artist could produce a scene in about 1.5 month minimum, and that the whole project demanded more than 500 scenes to be re-created. Since we were stretched so thin, what I wanted to avoid above all was redundancy. Thus, I tried to manage the project so that each person would work on really separate places. One of the problems regarding Midgar scenes was that some artists never made it quite clear what the extent of their contributions would be like (and I'm not talking about SpooX), and I was always willing to give them the benefit of the doubt rather than discounting them out right (again, because of our overall productivity issues).
- I had to account for the fact that various artist may very well have different creative profiles. To generalize: on the one hand there are three steps regarding the production of a work: getting the work started, developing a started work, and being able to wrap up and finish the work. Creative people are generally good at one of these three things, seldom at the three things at once. On the other hand, when facing a multitude of tasks, some people prefer to work sequentially (getting each job one after the other, and seeing each job through one by one), some others prefer to branch out (starting numerous jobs, and keep juggling between jobs). People preferring the "branching out" option are rather uncomfortable with a sequential approach, because keeping at a single task gets them bored and make it seem like a chore. So I think it is best to leave the people work with the approach they're the most comfortable with. I had the feeling that you could classify SpooX (he'd confirm himself, maybe  ;)  ) as someone who excels at starting tasks, and prefers to branch out.
- I had to be aware that, for contributors, many Real Life aspects had to take precedence over Team Avalanche. Be it job responsibilities, taking care of family/friends, recovering from an accident, all this is more important than Team Avalanche. It would be pointless to ask of someone else not to have a balanced lifestyle for the sake of the project. I've experimented upon myself last year since I had occasionally crossed the line between "hobby you're passionate about" and "chore you want to get over with", and even if you want to remain serious and passionate about this, Team Avalanche has to remain a hobby. This was in my opinion the only line to follow, because you can't have the drive for such project if you lose the "fun" aspect of it. That's why, after evaluating that, I was estimating the maximum productivity from an artist to be around 10 scenes per year, and more realistic expectations would even be below that.

I hope you can better appreciate the inherent limitations of undertaking a massive project when calling on the efforts of a loose group of amateurs.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: DLPB on 2015-06-30 16:23:59
Right now, I do not think it is fair to say that, on many counts. I would prefer to discuss the changes brought by the remake once we know more about them, and even then, we're likely to disagree on their merits/flaws (since I would prefer the ATB to be replaced, and certainly not by a turn-based system).

Since this is supposed to be a remake, I'm not sure how you feel removing a core component of the original game is okay.   That is not a remake, it's a complete change and re-imagining.  I am willing to bet that the vast majority of the fans of the original game WANT the ATB system in place, along with every other core component.  Because it was those things that made them like FF7 in the first place.  Why bother with a remake if the plan is to just do away with what made them a classic in the first place?  This point seems to be utterly lost on too many people, yourself included.  It isn't logical.  The whole purpose of this remake was supposedly to listen to fans who wanted to play the game again with better graphics - that's precisely what most people found to be the #1 reason for a remake.  It wasn't because they didn't like the ATB system.  I have literally never once heard an argument for a remake that went along the lines of "ATB system needs replacing" - it was always to upgrade the lego graphics and crap translation.

So basically, by changing a core component, you just alienate the majority of the very people the remake was appeasing.  Not very smart.  Not at all logical.  But, from Senix's pov, financially sound - because it will appeal to more people outside of the fanbase which, as I have said a few times, is the real reason the remake is in production. 

I am not saying ATB was perfect and I certainly know that the implementation of the battle system was mediocre, but those are the things that needed fixing.  I don't find any joy at all in gambits or AI characters.  I like to use my brain - and modern games are brainless and aimed at the brainless and make everyone else brainless.  I watched an FF15 trailer/demo more recently... and all it was to me was a huge pile of chaos with no tactics and little real input from the player's side.  That's not what games are meant to be about. 

Edit:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ihlaR7ubfOg

I mean just look at that.  It's just a chaotic mish mash of slashes -  It is a tale. Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, Signifying nothing.  If that's what gaming has come to then the industry might as well call it a day.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Mayo Master on 2015-06-30 18:03:56
So... you wish me to explain why I would have the dumb idea of willing to change the ATB system? Okay.

Personally, when I play a RPG, I play it primarily because I'm interested in the discovery of a fantasy world, epic adventures, and relationship between characters, and how the video game medium has a particular way to get the player immersed and involved in all this. When I play a RPG, I do not feel attached to specific combat mechanics. Regarding combat mechanics, what matters to me is that they're entertaining, have a certain element of strategy, and be coherent with the story/universe. If combat mechanics follow "Scheme X" instead of "Pattern Y", I don't really care. Now, I've never said that I didn't like ATB: actually I found that ATB was interesting and entertaining when I was playing the game back then. However I tend to prefer more dynamic systems, something that has a little more punch to it. Now, saying that an "action" orientation of the gameplay would be necessarily brainless, especially in comparison of earlier games, is in my opinion invalid: first because having to take fast decisions isn't necessarily detrimental, and second because earlier games did not necessarily require a much more clever approach (many old turn-based RPGs proposed combats which would be solved by "Attack">"Attack">"Attack" more than 90% of the time).
I will even make another case: when I recently played Dragon Age Inquisition, the game offers you the possibility to either play it like an action RPG, or to pause anytime for instructing your characters to take a specific course of action (which kind of breaks it down to a turn-based approach). If you play in higher difficulty setting (which I did), you have to plan your actions a lot more carefully, so you tend to take combat with a more "turn-based" approach, whereas you can keep the pace of an action game if the difficulty level is more forgiving. While I certainly had the impression that a higher difficulty mode made the game more "strategic", I was not at all convinced that it made the game more entertaining. And please, I am not saying that because "I don't like to think, it makes my head hurt"  ::)
Personally I would like the ATB system to be replaced because I desire a renewed, refreshed experience. There are other ways to make a game work, and I'm open to a variety of ideas. I do not hold a specific vision which should be adhered to dogmatically.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Kaldarasha on 2015-06-30 18:37:14
For me does FFX have the most stupid system. You spend a lot time in leveling skills and in the end all enemies are immune to the most of them and all what's left is to deal much damage and try to get as much turns as possible.
I think that DQ8 has the best battle system I have ever played because it is simple designed and every skill is more or less useful in end.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Mayo Master on 2015-06-30 21:05:35
I think that DQ8 has the best battle system I have ever played because it is simple designed and every skill is more or less useful in end.
Noooooooooooooooo! Not DQ8  :evil:!
Well, I would agree that DQ8 is the embodiment of extremely traditional turn-based mechanics. As you can suspect, this combat system was not really to my liking (which did not prevent me from enjoying the game as a whole, though), in part because it made me feel like I was still playing with the same mechanics I've played with back in the days of the Genesis (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AbV0IRFheqM) (1991!).
Personally, I prefer when a combat gameplay feels seamless, follows a dynamic flow of actions and stimulates quick reaction/anticipation. I think I do not like most turn-based systems mostly because of their repetitive "stop & go" pacing, and because they do not tend to offer much originality.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: anaho on 2015-06-30 22:04:14
I just want to say that I did not mean it a negative way. I just wonder why this announcement has just an impact on your modding activities? Did you not enjoy it? For me it has a lot of benefits: I can take a look as to what the industries┬┤ best decided a Mako reactor should look like in 2015 and backport that to the old game. I can also compare my results in a more appropriate way.
And I am very excited about the game as well even though I personally have disliked pretty much everything that came after FFIX.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: DLPB on 2015-07-01 08:46:11
For me does FFX have the most stupid system. You spend a lot time in leveling skills and in the end all enemies are immune to the most of them and all what's left is to deal much damage and try to get as much turns as possible.
I think that DQ8 has the best battle system I have ever played because it is simple designed and every skill is more or less useful in end.

I thought FFX's system was really well made.  It was again the implementation of it that failed for the reason you mentioned- same as FF7.  It was still a very decent system overall and unlike modern games, you got more control of your characters (even the Summons) not less.  It was far more fun and intelligent than FF12 imho (and for that matter I liked it better than FF8,9,12 and perhaps even FF7 as well because it's implementation, with one or two exceptions, was better).
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Mayo Master on 2015-07-01 17:20:20
It was still a very decent system overall and unlike modern games, you got more control of your characters (even the Summons) not less.  It was far more fun and intelligent than FF12 imho
I've never quite understood that particular criticism of FF XII (the notion that "the game plays itself" or "players do not have control on the party's actions"). First because the game always gives you the choice of disabling gambits and having the player make every single input, and second because even with Gambits on, the player's choices were always taking over Gambit action. In the end, the amount of input/control could be configured to a great extent (it could even be played like good old ATB if the player wished to), and I'm not sure how that makes this system "less intelligent" than that of earlier FFs.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: DLPB on 2015-07-01 17:40:35
I survived the vast majority of FF12 with 2 gambits "cure" and "attack" (based on some %), so it's a fact that it can virtually play itself. I watched it happen.  AI characters is lazy design and contrary to what a game is.  The idea of "programming" actions is the exact part the programmer should be doing - not the player.

That's where the criticism comes from.  And add to that the melee of numbers and crazy goings on in realtime that results in tactics and choice going out of the window.

I did not pay 50 quid to watch a bunch of preprogrammed scripts flailing about all over the place while I sit there with 2 hands free.  It's bad when a system is not implemented properly (mostly FF7 when discussing FF7-12), but it's FAR worse when the system itself is utter garbage.  I guarantee you that FF7-10 battle system took MUCH longer to program and test than FF12's.  It's lazy.

Also:

http://forums.qhimm.com/index.php?topic=14179.msg198182;topicseen#msg198182

The vote was actually 17-1.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Kaldarasha on 2015-07-02 10:51:45
I survived the vast majority of FF12 with 2 gambits "cure" and "attack" (based on some %), so it's a fact that it can virtually play itself. I watched it happen.  AI characters is lazy design and contrary to what a game is.  The idea of "programming" actions is the exact part the programmer should be doing - not the player.

That's where the criticism comes from.  And add to that the melee of numbers and crazy goings on in realtime that results in tactics and choice going out of the window.

I did not pay 50 quid to watch a bunch of preprogrammed scripts flailing about all over the place while I sit there with 2 hands free.  It's bad when a system is not implemented properly (mostly FF7 when discussing FF7-12), but it's FAR worse when the system itself is utter garbage.  I guarantee you that FF7-10 battle system took MUCH longer to program and test than FF12's.  It's lazy.

Also:

http://forums.qhimm.com/index.php?topic=14179.msg198182;topicseen#msg198182

The vote was actually 17-1.

I often have the problem that the AI scripts in the D&D games are often not what I needed. FFXII has done with the gambits a real good thing (it was that good that the  team of Dragon Age Origin has mimicked it), but honestly you have to like the western RPG battle system.
I agree that it seems to be degenerated to a 'Watch the fight' but most of the strategy part is outsourced to the battle planning - which FFX doesn't really had (however I did like to spend my time on the sphere board).
It is also important how you play out the role of a character. With a simple Attack-and-Heal system (which is basically the only thing you need to do in FF7 to win 98% of the fights) you won't win anything. Even the accessories Nihopalaoa is bringing a new strategy into the game.
Quote
the reason for wearing this item is it reverses restorative item effects used by/on that character. sounds nasty ehh? why would i want to hurt myself with a potion? ahhh, but.. by using a Remedy on an enemy, it works the same way as Bad/Putrid Breath from Morlboro type enemies. IE: equip the Nihopalaoa on whomever you wish to use it on, select a remedy to use, then Select an enemy and use it on THEM. it will inflict: Poison, Immobalize, Disable, Sap, Oil, Blind, Etc. on THEM!!! Great trick to use on those nasty mobs that are giving you trouble. be warned tho, some mobs are immune to some status effects, and this can be an expensive habbit once learned. But, the effects of this trick are wonderful if used correctly.
http://www.neoseeker.com/forums/4605/t798029-this-nihopalaoa-trick/

Also you are not forced by the game to use the Gambits. You can still pause and switch to the character and do all this by hand which a gambit would do in a seconed. :evil:

With all the games I have played from SE I can tell that they are always creating excellent systems which do their job. After all in a JRPG is the story more important as the battles. Sadly, if they put more importance to the battle they like to over do it with the enemy stats rather than invent a new dynamic tactic to beat the enemy.
FFXIII has done in that part actually a good job. I don't quite understand why people say that it was easy. Of course you haven't to deal with things you would usually, but do you must decide about the tactic the whole time. It is in some way like Tetris where a bad decision can have a radical impact to your party and how the battle evolves. It's actually a great concept but the story was lame so every one didn't like the rest too. :|

By the way the most epic JRPG Final Boss fight I did ever have was in Breath of Fire IV. I think that I did needed around two hours on him.

Oh, and do you really think FFXIII has a good battle system? You can beat the game on Level 1 and most of the good spells are never used because you need them to upgrade your stats. Which lets me revise my statement of FFX's battle system and puts it on the second place.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: LeonhartGR on 2015-07-04 05:45:09
Ok guys! So you can finally focus on a FFVIII overhaul afterall!? :) :)
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: sen on 2015-07-04 19:52:28
Ok guys! So you can finally focus on a FFVIII overhaul afterall!? :) :)
From future: The TA work on FFVIII nearly done then Square announces FFVIII remake. TA Project dropped.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Fischkopf on 2015-08-03 22:12:13
Ok guys! So you can finally focus on a FFVIII overhaul afterall!? :) :)

I think people should just proceed enhancing FF VII, as previously done.

Because I'm afraid FF VII Remake is not going to be the game we're hoping for. Square Enix already stated they're gonna scrap the turned based battle system... :(

I don't even want to know about the world map, because I highly doubt they're going to make the same world map, with random battles using their fancy new graphics engine. They're gonna do something different for sure, and I don't welcome that change.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Salk on 2015-08-04 03:37:41
I completely agree with Fischkopf.

It's unlikely the remake is going to be as good as the original. The TA work would still be very precious.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: SpooX on 2015-08-05 19:28:44
So there is no rest for the weary I guess...

It seems that at least some of you have more trust in TA than in Shinra Electrical, err.. I mean S.E.  :-o
hmmm is it a coincidence that both companies have the same initials...??
 8-)
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Cyberman on 2015-08-09 03:49:00
I'll try to keep it mostly in retro spect with TA work.
What you are making is for the OLD FF7 not the remake, if the remake is not the same game.
I see no reason too stop. Especially if they dropped content (how is that a remake then?)
If you want to stop that's a different reason.

Cyb
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Kaldarasha on 2015-08-09 09:24:39
I'll try to keep it mostly in retro spect with TA work.
What you are making is for the OLD FF7 not the remake, if the remake is not the same game.
I see no reason too stop. Especially if they dropped content (how is that a remake then?)
If you want to stop that's a different reason.

Cyb

But maybe it will be easier to mod the New to the Old game back?
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Cyberman on 2015-08-09 18:03:40
But maybe it will be easier to mod the New to the Old game back?
I think you are under estimating how much time it will take for doing that. Essentially you would have to:
The remake is likely to be 3d and a completely different engine, specifically it will be a LICENSED engine. This means encryption or content protection. So knowing the format is inadequate because it's scrambled and the key is burried in the executable and that is standard crypto key which means you won't be able to extract it without extraordinary means.

Now the brutal reality is, this is the same as starting the project over in terms of effort.
Cyb
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Kaldarasha on 2015-08-10 11:10:45
I think you are under estimating how much time it will take for doing that. Essentially you would have to:
  • know the new content format
  • know what needs converted
  • can create packages the new engine will accepted
The remake is likely to be 3d and a completely different engine, specifically it will be a LICENSED engine. This means encryption or content protection. So knowing the format is inadequate because it's scrambled and the key is burried in the executable and that is standard crypto key which means you won't be able to extract it without extraordinary means.

Now the brutal reality is, this is the same as starting the project over in terms of effort.
Cyb

The UT4 engine is available for free for a non-commercial use and also there are many games which will use this engine, so it is only a matter of time when tools are ready to modify the game.

As much as I would like to see this project finished, we don't have the personal resources nor the amount of time it would take to finish. With the announcement of the remake we have even a deadline and the worst thing a graphical reference which will lets look this project amateurish (I know that it isn't, but tell this the people who have never played the first release and are now trolling through the internet).
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Cyberman on 2015-08-10 22:07:41
The UT4 engine is available for free for a non-commercial use and also there are many games which will use this engine, so it is only a matter of time when tools are ready to modify the game.

As much as I would like to see this project finished, we don't have the personal resources nor the amount of time it would take to finish. With the announcement of the remake we have even a deadline and the worst thing a graphical reference which will lets look this project amateurish (I know that it isn't, but tell this the people who have never played the first release and are now trolling through the internet).
Their is Qgears which uses Ogre3d and a straight forward self engine. Actually people have tested stuff from TA in Qgears.
It's moving steadily along as far as I can see.
The big difference is Qgears does not limit you to just the original format. It imports it into Qgears.

Cyb
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Kaldarasha on 2015-08-11 09:09:07
As much as the Trailer promise they make a huge FF7 world. They have professional artists and probably have hired some freelancer for the project. Here was always the problem that people have started and then after they hit a few problems they lost the interest or they realized how much time this project will eat.
I'm pretty sure with a good workflow and a good resource development things will speed up. But it needs people for that and it was always hard to convince people for the project and with the announced remake it is even harder.

Regarding QGears I hope that it will become workable soon. I mean for programmer noobs like me. Mostly I want it to make my own FF7 prequel project because I think a story about the Cetra and how they sealed Jenova (or whatever they have called it/her) is more interesting as about stuff we actually knew a bit.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Mayo Master on 2015-08-11 16:16:06
We don't have the personal resources nor the amount of time it would take to finish. With the announcement of the remake we have even a deadline and the worst thing a graphical reference which will lets look this project amateurish (I know that it isn't, but tell this the people who have never played the first release and are now trolling through the internet).
I very much agree. At best (with all the time in the world), we might have been able to make something near the quality of FFX remaster. For having played it, while I didn't find it bad, the game felt dated nonetheless. As a player, I'm much more interested in a remake than a remaster.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: paul on 2015-08-11 16:48:46
Do you just mean awkward controls wise etc? QGears can fix these things.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Mayo Master on 2015-08-12 15:37:47
For FFX Remaster, it's a combination of things. Let me list a few: random encounters with turn-based battles, uneven quality of character models (main characters were nicely remodeled, but most NPCs had the PS2 poly-count, and even with re-texturing, you feel it), dated animations, some narrative elements... they're mostly inherent limitations of what a Remaster offers.
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Jahiliyyah on 2015-08-30 05:03:07
Sticky?
Title: Re: I guess that's it, guys
Post by: Fischkopf on 2015-09-05 10:57:09
Sticky?

Why? Mod development isn't stopping so there is no need to sticky a thread called "That's it guys"...