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Facing the Future: What's Next for Official Sets?

Facing the Future  

28 members have voted

  1. 1. What future for official CC sets would you find most ideal?

    • Make CCLP4 for CC1, then make CC2LP1 a different set for CC2.
    • Make CCLP4 and CC2LP1 basically the same set, without the use of CC2 elements in CC2LP1.
      0
    • Make CCLP4 and CC2LP1 basically the same set, with the use of CC2 elements in CC2LP1.
    • Forget about CCLP4 and move on with CC2LP1 instead.
    • Other (elaborate in the thread)


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When I was ordering levels in UC4 (and trying to keep a balance of styles) I had broken the levels down into:

Avoidance: What J.B. called 'Abstinence'. Basically, avoid collecting something you would usually collect. Commit Suicide is probably the best one of these I've played.
Collection: Just a collection focused level. Think Hunt or Yorkhouse, though the scale doesn't have to be quite that large.  Also classifies larger open levels.
Concept: A level less focused on the gameplay and more focused on making a given concept work. You could say You Can't Teach an Old Frog New Tricks falls under this to a certain extent, but I would say Debug File is a better example.
Guidance: Monster manipulation of some sort. Anything from Old Frog to the ending portion of Nuts and Bolts. A good middle tier level for this group is Chip Plank Galleon.
Itemswapper: Anything where the predominant means of accessing new things is swapping items. Sampler, Tool Box and Design Swap fit.
Maze: It's a maze you'd all better know what a maze is and CCLP4 had better have a lot of good mazes there's still some really neat concepts for them that haven't been in CCLPs yet.
Melee: There's dodging and stuff.
Sokoban: It's mostly block pushing and stuff.
Variety: Anything that doesn't fall nicely into one of the above categories. A level with no real gameplay theme. Automatic (Caution) Doors falls under variety level due to its gameplay varying throughout, despite the novel method of accessing new areas. It's also an itemswapper to a certain extent, but it doesn't feel like one at first.
 
My own breakdown was 1 Avoidance, 7 Concept, 7 Itemswapper, 8 Guidance, 9 Collection, 19 Melee, 30 Sokoban, 33 Variety and 35 Maze levels. I'd have liked more melee and a few less mazes in hindsight, but the overall balance is fairly solid I think. I haven't gone through any CCLPs for similar counts but I'd imagine there would be some similarities.
 
 
I don't think this breakdown is by any means perfect and definitely think it could be improved. How, I'm not sure.
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This is a pretty long and verbose thread so I haven't read through each post.

In short, I agree with most of what Bowman (and Eric) said.

 

Making levels conform to multiple rulesets can be an intimidating and potentially tortuous process.  So if we want to encourage more casual designers to be able to contribute to CCxLPns and allow maximum freedom of creativity, then CC1 and CC2 level packs should proceed in parallel and be unrelated.  CC2 level packs should go all out on the new CC2 elements.  (The Lynx compatibility restrictions in CCLP3 and CCLP1 did help get rid of inane and insane MS tile combinations, but no similar benefit would be derived by trying to make the same level work in both CC1 and CC2.)

 

I voted for the first option as being the closest to my opinion, but I think there is no need to stop CC1LPs after CCLP4 nor necessarily have a specific time ordering between CCLP4 and CC2LP1.  I agree that it is still too early for CC2LP1 (and BTW also still think that it's a little early for CCLP4).  I think CC2 Create competitions (and other types of CC2 competitions) would better serve its purpose right now than an early CC2LP1.

 

With reference to the comment:

... from an "official support" perspective, CC2 is a game that's active and available on Steam, whereas Tile World and the MS / Lynx versions of CC1 don't quite hold that distinction ...

 

 

Tile World is freely available for download, still has people occasionally working on it, runs on pretty much any platform (including older ones), and doesn't require an Internet connection and a bulky Steam environment to play.  I think Steam just isn't an appealing platform to casual gamers.  There may be a large intersection between the currently active CCZone community and CC2 players, but I see that there are at least a few CC1 players - including me - who don't seem to have played CC2 yet.

 

Not making more CC1 packs because CC1 is less "active" is one argument.

Another one is to continue making more CC1 packs so that it remains active.

But I think trying to make packs that work in CC1 as well as CC2 will ruin the fun for both.

 

 

- Madhav.

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It seems that every discussion about CCLP4 gets a lot of activity over its first few days and everyone gives their opinion.  Then the discussion gets forgotten for a few months and no progress is made.

 

Agreed. Which is why I've been trying to encourage anyone who's interested to step up and make it happen. Personally, I don't have the time to spearhead CCLPs these days, and I'd rather enjoy one upon release without all the knowledge of what went into its production for once. But I'm willing to answer any questions and provide some basic help to those who would like to get this off the ground. The key is to just run with it. If enough community members are in favor of kicking off a new CCLP and feel like the staff represents them well, then there's nothing holding anyone back.

 

Making levels conform to multiple rulesets can be an intimidating and potentially tortuous process.  So if we want to encourage more casual designers to be able to contribute to CCxLPns and allow maximum freedom of creativity, then CC1 and CC2 level packs should proceed in parallel and be unrelated.  CC2 level packs should go all out on the new CC2 elements.  (The Lynx compatibility restrictions in CCLP3 and CCLP1 did help get rid of inane and insane MS tile combinations, but no similar benefit would be derived by trying to make the same level work in both CC1 and CC2.)

 

Agreed as well. I'm not quite as active in the community anymore, so I'm perfectly content to wait and see what happens once CCLP4 is made. If enough people want to port it to CC2 in some way, then sure, go right ahead - I don't think there are enough ruleset differences to make such an effort as complex as, say, CCLXP2. It doesn't matter to me, honestly. But from what I'm gathering from the comments here, it sounds like most people agree that CC2 is too new for CC2LP1 to be made, and many believe that enough levels have been offered up for CCLP4 (including some from designers who felt gipped with the difficulty restrictions in CCLP1) for it to become a reality.

 

So what would the level categories be?

 

Like I mentioned in a previous post, I don't think that shoehorning all of the submissions into predetermined categories this specific would be a wise idea. It would be putting the cart before the horse and basically requiring that the set contain, for instance, an "ice / force floor maze" category right off the bat before the staff even reviews the submissions and sees how many ice / FF mazes there even are. The same can be said for setting submission caps on these categories. I believe a wiser idea would be to allow the designers to evaluate their sets, decide what represents them the best with minimal regard for how everyone else is represented by choosing a variety of quality entries on a broad level, and then let the chips fall where they may (so to speak). The staff can then review the submissions after that phase and decide how the broad categories need to be segmented further. At least that way, the staff decisions will be based on what is, not what could be - and the designer decisions can be less informed by what seems to be over- or under-represented.

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Agreed. Which is why I've been trying to encourage anyone who's interested to step up and make it happen. Personally, I don't have the time to spearhead CCLPs these days, and I'd rather enjoy one upon release without all the knowledge of what went into its production for once. But I'm willing to answer any questions and provide some basic help to those who would like to get this off the ground. The key is to just run with it. If enough community members are in favor of kicking off a new CCLP and feel like the staff represents them well, then there's nothing holding anyone back.

 

I'm waiting for other people who want to be on the staff. Everyone knows I'm willing to lead it (or co-lead it with Jeffrey) so if we have to make it clear that we want to get this project moving we can and we can also try to recruit some members for the staff team. Though I personally don't know how to start off on a project like this so that's what I'm having trouble with. I guess just open submissions for CCLP4 for the time being?

 

Edit: I'm pretty sure most of everyone forgot this was a thread. http://cczone.invisionzone.com/index.php?/topic/1083-cclp4-staff-assembly/

 

The real question is are the people who are on the "Not against being on the staff" section, still willing to contribute to CCLP4? This would be a good stepping stone to get the project moving forward.

Edited by Flareon350
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I am willing to be on the staff, in pretty much any capacity.

 

As for getting started, I think the first thing is to have the community at large approve a staff. Then it's up to the staff to make official decisions like opening submissions.

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I think the key for now is forming the staff. If you and Jeffrey are still interested in coordinating the project, I'd recommend just starting a thread, saying that you're willing to take on the responsibility, and asking the community if anyone else wants to join the effort. Sounds like you've already got some volunteers. :) Once that's done, providing the community doesn't object to the staff (and I can't imagine that being the case), you can more effectively start making decisions about submissions, submission caps, voting, and the like. If there's a dedicated group of people stepping up to the plate, participation will happen, and the conversation won't die out again.

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I voted for option 1, but I don't necessarily think CCLP4 should be made before CC2LP1. I think a CC2 pack has a better potential to be great, but it might be a good idea to postpone it a bit until more custom levels are available.

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About two years after the post before this one, but I've been giving this some thought lately, and this is my idea:

CCLP4 has been released as a CC1 LP, as we all know, and it seems like option 1 is what the community is going for. But I'm not going to talk specifically about CCLP4 and CC2LP1, but instead, about future levelsets in general.

My idea is that we go for CC2LPs for some time. The way they would be is that people can submit CC2 levels at their will, and anyone can also submit CC1 levels at their will. Most or at least half of the set would consist of CC2 levels, and a percentage or half of the set would consist of CC1 levels.

Maybe the CC1 levels could be released in their own levelset to be played with CC1 (or CC1 clone), despite not reaching 149 levels. Although to be honest, I don't think many of you would be in favor of a levelset of less than 149 levels (for it is seen as a sacred number of levels for official levelsets). Making this levelset doesn't have to be a thing, though, only the CC2LP one.

After releasing two or three levelsets containing CC2 levels (for example), we can go on to making CCLP5 (yes, a CC1 levelset that comes after CCLP4). The next levelset would either be CCLP6, before going back to CC2 levelsets, or another CC2LP without creating CCLP6 first.

All these last examples I am putting is assuming there will still be a good enough Chip's Challenge fanbase going on in several years from now, as official levelsets need at least a one year gap in between them, but I just wanted to show the pattern it would be following.

Another factor is the future CC1 would be facing. Maybe over time the majority will have CC2 (or a possible fan made clone). And wouldn't be as interested in CC1 levels anymore, so nobody would care about more CC1 official levelsets being released, so only CC2LPs would be created.

About this last thing I said though, I'm going to give my personal opinion: we have spent so many years loving and enjoying CC1, that even if it recieves less attention, I don't think we would all abandon it completely, we would probably still be making CC1 levels every now and then if you ask me.

Edited by Hash1

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Chip's Challenge is the game that defined my childhood. I continue to enjoy it in my limited spare time, but have no plans to touch the second game (certainly not as long as it remains only available on Steam with no official community packs).

 

There remains growth potential (and thus scope for official level packs) for the original game. Windows is no longer the dominant casual gaming platform (consoles are more for hardcore gamers). That title now belongs to the device that shaped the last decade: the iPhone. Releasing Chip's Challenge on iPhone and Android would increase the playerbase. However, the mobile version would require its own official level pack (many levels in existing official packs would be virtually unplayable with touchscreen controls) and slightly altered rules. (Of course, versions for major consoles would also help attract new players and retain existing ones, but not as much as mobile versions.)

 

Among the existing official packs, I only consider CCLP1, CCLP3 and CCLP4 worth playing. The original 149 levels retain their nostalgic value but have been superseded by CCLP1. With too many mediocre levels and invalid tiles, CCLP2 is a warning that we should not rush with the first official community pack for CC2. To me, only a remake (worst levels replaced, no invalid tiles or major busts) would redeem CCLP2. I tried CCLXP2, which does not go far enough but shows that such a remake is possible.

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CC2 will remain exclusively on Steam for as long as it continues to be sold there. As to why, it's simple to look at the reason Tile World was originally created and later superseded MSCC. MSCC was no longer legally obtainable, and computers were coming along that could no longer run the game, so a replacement clone/emulation/whatever term you want to use needed to be created. CC2 needs no such tool for the foreseeable future. The editor, on the other hand, can be replaced as it would just be a new way of creating the content, and I know a decent amount of people are waiting on the new editor to begin creating more CC2 content. Once some has been created, a CC2 community pack will certainly follow. But from the tone of your post, I take it a CC2 community pack that can still only be played through Steam isn't quite what you want :P

 

As for mobile ports, there actually are (very inaccurate and deprecated) ports for both ios and Android- Will's World and Rommy's Gauntlet. They didn't take off, and in fact were completely ignored outside of people who already knew of CC. However, Chuck's Challenge 3D was originally a mobile game, and did decently well. The only thing that held it back was a lack of a way to stitch together multiple user levels, which completely prevented any community packs for the game. I can understand different levels for touchscreen controls, but that would create a watered down experience- and why alter the rules that have served us so well? At that point, whoever is creating the port would be better off building something new, inspired by CC instead of what will be seen as a failed recreation.

 

Fun fact about CCLP2: most of the disliked levels in the set weren't picked due to lack of other options, but instead because nearly a dozen levels weren't included because the staff couldn't contact the designer for the final okay. Personally, I don't think there's anything wrong with invalid tiles, as long as they're used carefully. They're very easy to do wrong, after all. The standard for level design these days is also a lot higher, so even if we went into a CC2 community pack construction with only 500 or so levels to choose from (CCLP2 had ~1300, CCLP3 had a few thousand after ineligible levels were removed, CCLP1 and 4 had roughly 3.5k valid levels as well) the level of quality would be much higher. CCLXP2 was not meant to be a remake of CCLP2 that fixed every flaw, but instead meant to be a Lynx compatible version of the set- with everything that meant. Busts weren't fixed to stay true to the original experience (though switching to Lynx did fix some such as Trapped, but also allowed more such as Zartacla), and no levels were replaced for the same reason (though obviously, some underwent massive changes as the original concept could only work due to invalid tiles or MS-only mechanics, with a level that captured the spirit of the original in its place).

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As can be seen in the cc2info download, there are 1274 level in the database, which does not include any ported sets, single levels not in sets by their authors which are available for download or any other sets from me other than mind games or any duplicates from anyone. The original levels and rejects are however included, over all this would mean there are currently slightly less than 1000 levels which could be in voting which were made for cc2 and currently public. There are several authors which I guess would submit levels before voting, even if their sets aren't completely finished and therefore not released at the moment, which means there most likely would be over 1k levels currently and probably some ports from levels for made for cc1.

 

If you look at the average level quality for cc2 levels (and I played them all), it is actually really good, way higher than what I've seen in the voting packs for cclp4, which means it's right now no problem to assemble a community set consisting of 200 levels :cool:

 

And generally it's better to put less levels in voting packs so that more people can vote on most of them than too many which leads to some sections are played by just a handful of people. To select 200 levels for a set there probably shouldn't be more than 600 levels - which would have to be preselected - in voting to keep it reasonable in this regard.

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I would love to see a CCLP5, there are still some levels in the community that are good for an official set. I believe that CC1 is still dominant despite CC2 being out for 2 years.

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CCLP4 just came out, so yes, currently a lot are playing cc1 levels again, yet as you can see above when CC2LP1 comes out, the same hype will be around cc2 hopefully, after that with CCLP5 cc1 again, then CC2LP2 and who knows what comes next :D

 

Sounds like a plan and I love it when a plan comes together :cool:

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You make it sound like playing CC1 levels again is a bad thing. Also I don't agree with a CC2 community set having 200 levels, I don't think that's necessary personally.

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CCLP2 is a warning that we should not rush with the first official community pack for CC2.

CCLP2 was released about 10 years after the game was ported to Windows. If that's "rushed," then how long do you want us to wait?

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Neither did I write anything like this nor did I imply it in any way.
 
If you ask for my opinion, well, since the cc1 mechanics are just a subset of those in cc2, there is no reason to restrict anyone to those, if there are great cc1 levels out there, they probably made it into cclp4, or they were not that good. Some gems where probably overlooked or were to new for the set, but in those exceptions, they anyhow can easily be implemented for cc2 (yes, there are slight rule differences, so you can't just always put exactly the same tiles at the same places, but they exist between lynx, mscc, twlynx and twmscc as well, and everything can be implemented in cc2). So it's not like anyone has to miss a great level just because a cc2 set is planned. And as I mentioned, if there are that many levels made purely for cc1, at any point a new cclp for cc1 can be made as well - it's not like just because a cc2lp will be made, there will never be any cclps anymore. ;)
 
200 levels for a cc2 set feels logical to me, since the original set consists of 200 levels. Everything else sounds arbitrary - but if there are good reasons for another number - I don't have any feeling towards any particular number, that was just what without thinking about it sounded evident, since there is probably no other reason for cc1 sets to have 149 levels other than the original set has 149 :)

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CCLP4 just came out, so yes, currently a lot are playing cc1 levels again

 

Seemed pretty implied to me... CC1 is still a strong part of Chip's Challenge, just as much as CC2 is.

 

In any case, CC2 community sets can have as many levels as people want them to have. I'm throwing my opinion out there and saying I don't think 200 is strongly necessary but I would still play it regardless. That's up to whoever is in charge of that community pack.

 

CCLP2 was released about 10 years after the game was ported to Windows. If that's "rushed," then how long do you want us to wait?

 

In hindsight, the first editor(s) weren't released till around 3-4 years prior to CCLP2 :P

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Hi,

 

Seemed pretty implied to me... CC1 is still a strong part of Chip's Challenge, just as much as CC2 is.

 

What I meant is if you look at the number of levels/sets uploaded on this site, and especially downloads, a lot of people when cc2 came out, made levels for it and played them, with cclp4, submission, voting and the set release this has shifted towards cc1 levels nothing really more, nothing less than those facts - no need for those negative interpretations :cool:

 

And of cause the same will be true for the next set being for cc2, it's for some people motivation to design and play cc2 levels, as is stated in several posts in this thread as well...

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If you look at the average level quality for cc2 levels (and I played them all), it is actually really good, way higher than what I've seen in the voting packs for cclp4

This seemed like a stronger implication to me. Though to be fair, hkn made it sound like a CC2 set would be a bad thing.

 

In hindsight, the first editor(s) weren't released till around 3-4 years prior to CCLP2 :P

Oh...fair enough. :rolleyes:

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What I meant is if you look at the number of levels/sets uploaded on this site, and especially downloads, a lot of people when cc2 came out, made levels for it and played them, with cclp4, submission, voting and the set release this has shifted towards cc1 levels nothing really more, nothing less than those facts - no need for those negative interpretations :cool:

 

I wasn't really being negative whatsoever, I was more or less stating there's nothing wrong with shifting towards CC1 again. We're all not going to just drop and forget all about CC1 just because CC2 has been released. ;)

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I believe both CCLP5 and CC2LP1 are great ideas, however I feel that CCLP5 has a better chance of happening since chipsters seem to submit more CC1 levels.

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since chipsters seem to submit more CC1 levels.

 

At least not on cczone  ;) 

In the last 6 month there were more new levels by more different designers uploaded for cc2 than cc1...

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In the last 6 month there were more new levels by more different designers uploaded for cc2 than cc1...

Alright, let's break this down because it's not accurate.

CC1 sets:

ZK5, 30 levels

"Ordinary": 14 levels

UC6: 60 levels

For a total of 104 new levels by 4 designers, not counting the previously unreleased Josh's Early Levelset, which would add around 70-80 levels, and it also doesn't count Zane's ZK2 & ZK3 remake/rerelease stuff which definitely added some new levels to the mix. This also doesn't count JoshL7 which became unreleased and the... 11 levels within.

 

CC2 sets:

Mind Games: 100 levels

Explorer's Delight: 10 levels

Rising: 8 levels

500: 6 levels

Silver: 12 levels

LIght and Dark: 8 levels.

For a total of 144 levels by 3 designers.

 

So at a glance it looks like CC2 is more active, but in reality this data is heavily skewed by Mind Games being a large release definitely worked on outside of the given 6 month timeframe, no large releases for CC1 in a similar timeframe that are easy to count (ZK2/3 stuff is basically uncountable but would bump new CC1 content above in quantity) and similarly unreleased large projects for either game. Vehudur/Lessinath is working on a big one for CC2, Josh has some CC2 levels in the works from the editor beta (that I don't have :( ) and I'm sitting on a decent pile of unreleased CC1 levels too.

 

Basically, the activity is pretty similar for both games without CCLP4. Perhaps this is due to CCLP4, perhaps not. But CC2 never really took off and I still think it all goes back to the editor.

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Josh has some CC2 levels in the works from the editor beta (that I don't have :( ) and I'm sitting on a decent pile of unreleased CC1 levels too.

 

Actually I don't have anything made in the new editor, since there's currently no save feature (spoilers?). I do, however, have 5 new unreleased Flareon1 levels (which I removed off this site for the record). But I will have some stuff made probably once that's fixed. It's not too late to get a hold of the beta though I don't think!

 

I also have a decent amount of unreleased CC1 levels, including the 12 from JoshL7.

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Just for the sake of correctness: :P
I think you are counting some of my levels twice and some older levels, since Mind Games does not consist entirely of new levels, and forgetting about Joshua Bone (CC2 Worlds and a bunch of new levels in Walls of Chip's Challenge) as well as some levels from geodave, so the numbers are probably slightly different. Nanamin's Challenge is actually is just outside of the arbitrary time frame, but would change the numbers quite a bit again.
But the important part is not really how many levels exactly where made, just it's not like no one makes any cc2 content :)

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