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Flareon350

CCLP4: Starting Difficulty

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Hey everyone. With submissions closed, testing still underway and the fact there aren't many CCLP4 topics here, let's get a topic started!

While it's been unofficially established that CCLP4's difficulty would not surpass CCLP3's and would instead be a mix of it's predecessors, it would be helpful to know what exact other community members expect out of this project, in terms of difficulty.

Recently, the staff and I have discussed topics in regards to the difficulty of CCLP4 and how it should start off, preferably with it's first 10 levels. We arguably focused on what a potential level 1 would consist of, but the first 10 levels of any set really show it's starting difficulty.

Every official community pack has started off in a different way - CCLP1 with it's tutorial levels, CCLP2 with it's busted and short levels that required little to no effort to solve, and CCLP3 with it's direct jump into challenging yet still moderate* levels. While nothing is official, I am curious to know other people's opinions and maybe this will shed some light on what the community expects out of CCLP4.

 

Me personally... I'd like to see the start of CCLP4 ease into levels that are challenging - basically levels that I wouldn't expect to solve on the first try. Stuff like tutorial levels I feel are unnecessary for this set's start as well.

So what are your views? Comment below! :)

 

*this is obviously debatable

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Looking into the first ten levels of the existing original sets, here is what I think.

 

In CC1, you get eight lesson levels, Nuts and Bolts and Brushfire.  The lessons aren't particularly fun but they serve their purpose.  Nuts and Bolts is a great start to "real" levels, and Brushfire is somewhat of a disappointment.

 

In CCLP1, you get pretty much the same thing, only with nine or ten lessons, because as Melinda says, Graduation is both the last lesson and the first "real" level.  Once again, the lessons are ordinary but are good at teaching basics.  Graduation is also a nice level, but nothing special.

 

CCL(X)P2 is probably the best set so far in terms of the first ten levels, I think.  There are no lessons because they are completely unnecessary, as everyone who plays that set is probably already somewhat familiar with the game.  All its levels are good except two: A Fleeting Memory and Use the Fish.  Don't get me wrong, I like A Fleeting Memory, except for the bust, but as a first level it's somewhat of a disappointment.  Use the Fish...well I quite frankly don't care whether Dopefish lives or not, sorry.

 

CCLP3 is...well...I don't know...Entrance Examination is the best first level of any official set so far, but other than that...Snakes and Ladders is a major disappointment as a second level, Toggle Bust is just plain awful, Pigeonholed isn't one of Scott Feeney's best levels (by the way, In the Trenches is still incorrectly marked as unsolvable in MS in the spreadsheet).

 

For CCLP4, I think the first level should be Tutorial World by Jeffrey Bardon.  No lesson levels should be required as most players would already be familiar with CC1 or CCLP1.  The other nine should be not too easy, not too hard, somewhat like in CCLP2.

 

Also Josh, your signature is broken.

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Personally, I would elect to start the difficulty somewhere around early (11-25) CCLP1, with a few simple and fun levels, and then naturally increase the difficulty from there. I don't think level 1 in particular should be a full map campaign level, or take much more than a minute to casually solve. An overall review/variety level akin to Graduation/Entrance Examination (though likely between these in difficulty) would be a nice follow-up.

My personal pick would probably be my own Molecule, but Josh's State of the Art or J.B.'s Forward Thinker are other good choices I think. Bonus points for the title applying to CCLP4 as a whole :P

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I agree with what everyone else has said so far, lesson levels don't seem like they would really fit in for the beginning of the set, but some sort of opening level that pays homage to the previous sets while setting up this set (in terms of tricks/devices/methods/types of levels that have been used in the past and not necessarily actual levels themselves, though it could). One idea would be if there was a level that used a wall layout from a cc level with a combination of level parts from a cclp2, cclp3, and cclp1 level or something like that to tie them all together. And you could have a combination of levels that fit those sets earlier levels to start it off, for instance two levels that could have been in each set, and then if there are any levels with new/different/interesting concepts that weren't in any of those sets they could be nice bridge levels between the first ten levels and the rest of the set (provided they have the correct difficulty that is). You could also mix the difficulties around a bit too so that as the set gets harder there's a variety of levels in between, (for instance maybe there's a simpler level concept but it's a really long level, or a tricky concept that's super short, kind of like a breather level, every now and then to break up the other levels difficulties. (Not knowing the submission pool you are working from some of these ideas may or may not work)... Thanks and good luck!

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I don't think that any tutorial levels would be required for a Number 4 major release. All elements should have been thoroughly demonstrated in previous levels. However, IMO, the levels should be arranged in either a "theme", or rising levels of difficulty, or a mix of the above.

ian

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