Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Valley 2 Official 1.001-1002 "Mouse Aiming For Those Who Stood And Fought" Released!

This one addresses a few minor issues, as well as properly filling out the beta player contributors credits list.

More newsworthy, undoubtedly, is the addition of a new option in the settings menu that enables mouse-aiming.  This is something I said I'd never do for this game, but apparently never say never.

I maintain my stance that mouse aiming makes for a watered-down experience, and that the better gameplay model is with a gamepad or the keyboard.  However, there is a sizable contingent of players who disagree with me.

Let me back up for a minute:  I felt like I was rather bullied into adding mouse controls to the first game, and that was to the detriment of that game.  The gamepad controls and keyboard-only controls were really gimped by the presence of those mouse controls, but the mouse controls were what most people (including myself) used.

With the sequel I wanted to have a tighter experience that did away with the mouse controls and was a more traditional platformer in how it controlled.  In that, I succeeded.  The gamepad and keyboard controls rock in Valley 2.

However, there are some people who simply can't play the game without mouse controls, apparently.  I say that with only mild bitterness, heh.  In all seriousness, there are people who simply have not learned that method of controlling games.  It's the longer-standing method of controlling games, but that's really irrelevant.

I remember how I felt when I was first exposed to dual-stick FPS controls on consoles -- I thought it was the most terrible thing ever.  Now I think it's fine, but again that's beside the point.  I also remember how hard I found the transition from being a keyboard-only FPS player to a mouse+keyboard FPS player (yes, I'm old), but once I did make that transition I never looked back -- WASD plus mouse is incredibly superior for FPS games.

The point is, there are apparently a sizeable group of people who feel the same way when it comes to sidescrollers.  I still disagree, and I encourage those people at least to give the gamepad or keyboard controls a shot.  However, I remember how I basically found dual-stick shooters unplayable at first, and if that's how the keyboard/gamepad controls made you feel about Valley 2, then there's now a salve, at least.

Anyhow, long story short, not for the first time I'm forced to eat my words.  Never say never and all that.  I'm sure it won't be the last time either.  For those people who were put off by the lack of mouse controls, hopefully now you'll find the game to be actually something you can play.

UPDATE: 1.002 is now out to fix an issue where the mouse aiming was accidentally on by default, and improve documentation in the game associated with mouse aiming.


This is a standard update that you can download through the  in-game updater itself, if you already have any version of the game.  If you have the beta on Steam, it will automatically update for you.  When you  launch the game, you'll see the notice of the update having been found  if you're connected to the Internet at the time.  If you don't have the standalone game, you can download that hereIf you already own the first game, just use your existing license key to unlock the sequel for free!


  1. Finally you, as a developer, have overcome the biggest obstacle you will ever face: Yourself.
    Fake difficulty (AKA non-customizable controls) are never a pro, they are a con, and many a title has flopped due to that, and that alone.
    You made a good choice, even if you made it for the wrong reasons. But some day you'll grow up even more, and understand that you are making a product that people other than you have to enjoy.

  2. Wow, impressively condescending, Anonymous! If you've followed the game's development at all, you would understand that the control scheme was in the intent to make the best game possible, not just because Arcen arbitrarily liked it better and wanted to force people to play how they did or something.

    Mouse aiming may be a good business decision for the people that just can't get used to it, but I agree it's probably not the best way to play the game...

    1. I can get used to it, but you know what? I shouldn't -have- to. I loved the M+K in AVWW1, it was great. It worked awesome! Imagine my surprise to load up AVWW2 to find, Gee no mouse. I played it for a while but decided I liked the First one better anyway. (I also think the first one looks better... they look like cheap wannabee mortal kombat characters in the second XD)

    2. Oh yes, I -know- mouse aiming was added but It's too little too late. We're not the target market either way. We already own it. (And yes, I will eventually sit down and play through it one day) But still, There was a -major- outcry of people wanting mouse, call that whining/feeling entitled all you want but when there is a big outcry like that... maybe, just maybe, Arcen were wrong? Not every PC gamer owns a gamepad (I have a really old one I use specifically for my nintendo emulator as it doesn't have very many buttons.)

      Just my four cents.
      Have a good one.
      (PS, I'm not that anon you were aimed at.)

  3. I will still be using the gamepad controls personally, but at least now maybe some of the people that were put off for some reason by the original control scheme may now get into the game and appreciate it.
    I am sorry that you had to compromise your vision for the game somewhat, but sincerely hope that it pays off.

  4. I'm happy to see they included mouse aiming. Mouse aiming might not be the most optimal way to play, but it's great that the option is available for the players who wanted it. The more options you give your players, the better.

  5. It's sad that you have to implement changes contrary to your views on the game because of a minority of teenagers raging over at Steam, they sure don't represent your target audience.

  6. It wasn't just teenagers on forums, it was also at least two reviewers. One who already wrote a review, and one who has not yet but will.

    For more information on the whole thing: http://www.arcengames.com/forums/index.php/topic,12493.msg136063.html#msg136063

    1. Thanks for the link, your post was very elucidating, I really hope the tide turns and brings better fortune for this game as well as the company.

    2. Oh no, they wanted mouse support! Damn those stupid PC gamers and their wanting of something more than what WE thought the game needed!

      Maybe next time We'll just release our game on XBOX, Those guys will love it!

      Protip: Release AVWW2 ON XBLA and PSN. I bet it'll do pretty good, No joking here either. *thumbs up*

  7. I'm pleased that you were able to do this Christopher. There is also a small minority of people for whom using a gamepad or a keyboard is simply too much of a challenge, people with disabilities and limited coordination in particular. Using a mouse for some is a more intuitive way of moving a cursor on the screen than pressing a combination of keys or even using a stick. My issue is RSI-related, meaning that I find gamepads uncomfortable to use (the way the thumbs are held is really quite painful) and my keyboard ability is also limited to a few minutes. I found the combination of the mouse and the keyboard on Valley 1 really helped me to play the game for longer, so I look forward now to playing Valley 2. Thank you.

  8. "This lets players who find keyboard or gamepad controls to be repugnant to experience the game in some manner. Our view is that this manner is sub-par and watered-down, but we've finally started looking at this as more of an accessibility mode. It's not ideal, but it allows a certain demographic to play who is otherwise unable/unwilling to do so."

    how about this: go f*** yourself. i bought the first game from gamersgate in alpha way before release, because i loved the demo and wanted to support people making something different. however, after seeing the attitude coming from you guys about the controls several months ago, i find myself wishing i could withdraw that money/support. finally listening to your customers isnt enough, its clear that you still dont understand WHY it is important.

    so screw you, screw this game, and screw any future games. im done with you. clearly, youre not interested in my "demographic" or my money.

    1. I'm not going to engage in a lengthy debate, because I'm highly unlikely to change anyone's opinion. However, a few points:

      1. I think it's unreasonable for someone to assume that if a game's design is not suited to exactly their tastes, that the developer must change the game design to suit their tastes or the developer is screwing them over.

      2. Controls are a big part of a game's design, like it or not, and "having options is always a good thing" is not true. Let's take baseball: personally, I really prefer hitting tennis balls with a metal bat, because that's lower-impact and more fun. When playing various recreational versions of baseball at home in the yard, we'd typically do that. It's fun! However, even in Little League, using anything but a real baseball is Right Out. In the pros, forget about anything but a wooden bat.

      Or take tennis. Even in the pros, the newer strings and frames are used, of course. And I think that's a good thing. But the game has demonstrably been changed since the 70s, irretrievably, since wooden rackets are no longer used. It's more about power and speed and topspin now, whereas it used to be more about slice and backspin. The sport is fundamentally changed.

      Or take first person shooters. When a FPS game transitions from a console to a PC or vice-versa, it goes through more changes than you might realize. On the console, enemies are slower to aim and move slower and so forth, and there is typically some auto-correction of your shots even when auto-aim is off. On the console things move faster, enemies aim better, and so forth -- and the reason is to do with the controls being so much faster on the PC. If you try to take a PC FPS game and just put it straight onto a console, the players will get slaughtered. If you put a console game straight onto the PC, it's way too easy and the AI seems about brain-dead because it's so slow compared to you. It takes weeks or months for developers to tune them right for each platform. Weeks or months that, in this case, we didn't have.

      3. Basically, I'm in a no-win situation. There are people who are severely disappointed that I didn't stick to my guns, and that I'm upsetting people who "aren't willing to meet the game on its own terms." Aka, they want to bring a tennis ball to a Little League match. Who does it hurt, but it's no longer the same game. On the other side, there is a contingent who is extremely patronizing or entitled-sounding, who is basically saying "if I want to bring a rubber ball or whatever else to the game, you better let me or you're a blind, selfish, foolish monster."

      (continued below)

    2. 4. Nobody can read tone from text very well. Read my post again, I've not altered it. In fact, read even the sections you've quoted as a reason to blast me forever. I don't think there's anything unreasonable said there at all, if you actually look at game design like a game designer does. Also look in the forums relating to this release; the fans of this game are largely sighing louder than I did, because there's a really cool experience here if you meet it on its own terms, and you lose that experience if you're dead-set on bringing that tennis ball to the ballgame. It's a different game, and I think an inferior one. Others agree.

      In the end I can't please everyone. So the controls default to the intended experience, and the purists turn up their nose at the new option. The people who wanted the new option are free to use it, but the inevitable comments about how the combat is shallow are going to make me bang my head on the desk -- it's shallow because you're using the new option! "Gosh it's easy to hit home runs over and over again with this tennis ball!" But at least it's playable, and if you enjoy it then great.

      If you're offended by what I've said, especially to the degree some people seem to be, then I can only conclude that you want to be. I don't see things exactly your way, and this has made you extremely mad. I'm sorry that is the case, but do you really prefer the developers who lie to you through their teeth about how they feel about anything? I think I've shown a great deal of respect for the playerbase and potential playerbase on an issue that is quite tricky. Hopefully this post makes my position more clear.

    3. There is creative plan, gameplay mechanic, and itnerface. I perfectely understand that you feel that the keyboard is a better control method. But having played with both I am much more comfortable with mouse aiming. You may feel it was not good and you give jsutification above, but after the outcry for AVWW1, you should have at least learned better. But you felt you were right and plowed ahead to tighten (you think, I don't feel so) the keyboard control and removing mouse aiming.

      While I udnerstand your feeling of being between a hard palce and a stone, you should have known better after the AVWW1 outcry.

      And still you persisted. I urge you as a fellow developper to consider that maybe the whole story would have been evited if you had had a proper "lessons learned" from the outcry with mouse aiming for AVWW1. In fact it seems you did not. You presisted without trying to udnerstand mouse user.

      And yes I find it a tighter experience than with keyboard only. *shrug* you simply do not want to accept it. But it is so. You may have a different experience though.

      I recommend that if there is a AVWW3 , you either release it to a plateform without mouse if youa re so hung up to avoid mouse aiming at all cost, or put mouse aiming directely in (because hey, now the lessons might be learned after a SECOND outcry).

  9. i understand your position. you have a game you want to make, and a vision for how that game ought to be. by all means, make that game. knock yourself out. its YOUR game.

    by the same token, its MY money. IM the player, and the prospective customer, and *i* decide what i am and am not willing to play and pay for. and if you want me as a customer, you wont cast me as some kind of uncoordinated handicapped retard for not wanting to play the game the way you think it ought to be played. go ahead and do it, thats your prerogative, but dont be surprised when i tell you to go F yourself and decide to put my money towards some other developer.

    you are in an unenviable position: you need customers, i dont. you cant say what you obviously want to say (go F yourself, whiny a-holes) whereas i CAN.

    choices have consequences. choosing to make a sequel to a game but give it a radically different play and control style carries the consequence of alienating a lot of the people who liked the first game to begin with. talking down to them like theyre idiots who just dont understand your vision carries the consequence of you never getting another red cent of my money.

    thems the breaks, as they say.

    1. I really appreciate that you take the time to read what I say and not just blindly repeat yourself. I'm also gratified that you're complaining that a sequel I gave you for free did not meet your expectations.

      Further, I fail to recall ever having referred to anyone, ever, as a "retard," by implication or otherwise. I find that highly offensive. If you want to dig into the subtext of my original statements, I expressed frustration that some people feel that they "cannot" play any way other than their preferred way. In other words, frustration that the "I cannot play this" statements really mean "I will not take the time to learn."

      if your takeaway is that I'm a bad guy, I challenge you to find another company that does more for its customers or treats them with more genuine respect. Genuine respect does not mean bending over instantly on every issue, I'm afraid. And a disagreement is not a sign of disrespect. You have shown me nothing but contempt and disrespect not by your disagreeing with me -- that is fine -- but by your manner, your ultimatums, and your continual assumptions about meaning that is not there.

    2. What is with all of the bile and anger? Getting angry at video games, and the people who make them, is shallow and pointless.

      I've never seen a case where a developer has gone out of their way to give to their fanbase and received this kind of treatment.

      You seem to be going out of your way to find something to be angry about.

    3. a) i had no idea it was free, but thats ultimately irrelevant to me, as ill not be downloading it anyway.

      b) i literally cannot play it (i dont have a gamepad), and further dont WANT to "learn" to play it with one. if i wanted to play with a gamepad, id have a console.

      c) if you seriously believe that your communication about this issue has expressed anything other than (at the very least) contempt for people who want to play the game with a mouse... i dont know what to tell you, beyond suggesting you go back and re-read what youve written on the topic over the course of its development.

      d) you are making a commercial product, intended to produce profit. this means you do one of two things: you make a product people want, or you dont turn a profit. thats how it works. customers dont come around to seeing things your way, YOU come around to giving THEM what they want. period. and you dont give them crap about it either. call me crazy, but not wanting to spend my money on something that DOESNT WORK HOW I WANT IT TO WORK is not an unreasonable position for me to take as a consumer.

      the bottom line is, i dont want to hear about what you think of people who want mouse control. i dont want to hear your justification of why it isnt in there. i. dont. care. just like i dont care why a standard is better than an automatic, or vanilla is better than chocolate. i want what i want, and id damn well better get what i want, if you want my money for it, because i am the CUSTOMER. thats not entitlement, its CAPITALISM.

      and i for SURE dont want to hear any lip or attitude about it. i believe very strongly that financial transactions are a mode of communication... the ONLY mode of communication that matters, really, when it comes to (dis)satisfaction with a commercial product and its producer. when people spend money on a thing, they encourage similar products in the future, and additionally encourage everything about the product including its method of manufacture and development, and post-release/purchase support. ergo, merely adding the option is insufficient. i intend to discourage ignoring "entitled" customers for having the nerve to want what they want in future games. hopefully, given:

      "I have to be honest, at this point the game isn't exactly ripping up the sales charts. Which is pretty obvious I guess if you look at the sales ranking on Steam. Valley 1 was hovering in the #8 to #9 slot for several days after coming out, but Valley 2 has only reached #75 that I've seen."

      the message has been received, loudly and clearly. but somehow, i suspect it hasnt.

    4. Part of the problem with your argument is that it's not a clear cut case of "This is what people want, so we'll provide it". There are a number of folks who never thought we should add mouse control in the first place, and there are a number of folks who are upset at us for adding it (including at least one fairly major reviewer). There's literally no way to make everyone happy.

      Additionally, this isn't the only game out there that plays best with a gamepad. Take Super Meat Boy for example. Play that with anything but a gamepad and it's nearly impossible. The fact is, we wanted a certain feel for the game, and mouse control breaks that feel. Does this mean that we think everyone will like what we're doing, see our vision, and buy our game? Of course not. But, one of the advantages to being an indie gamer is that we get to make games that we like to play.

      Of course, our hope is that we'll find enough others who like the same things in games as we do, and we'll be able to put food on the table. If we don't, then, well, frankly, I lose my job. But, to be perfectly honest, trying to make every change that everyone wanted was part of the problem we had with the first game. We can't every make everyone happy, so we try to make games fun.

      I'm sorry you can't play the game with a gamepad. But the fact remains that the game, the enemies, and the levels just weren't designed with mouse controls in mind, so adding it in there breaks the game. Some folks say they don't care about that, they just want to play with a mouse. So, since from the technical side, this was a really easy change, we made it for those folks. That doesn't change the fact that they are playing a fundamentally different game than what others are playing.

      One final note, we keep talking about the gamepad play, but, the truth is, the game plays just fine with keyboard only controls. Having a gamepad isn't a technical requirement.


  10. Holy cow... i think these people love being abusive! Perhaps because there is anonymous masking who they are. But not to rile the already riled... Honestly, Arcen is only trying to make a game and make a living. Because of budget or ability they are forced to make some concessions. What I'm saying here is not everyone has WOW deep pockets to make super-super games. If you want to see what indie games look like, then why don't you go take a look at some of the 'humble bundle' entries, that and some of the rouge-likes that are in production out there? Has Irrational Games (makers of Bioshock Infinite) or 2K Games (makers of X-Com) or Gearbox Games (makers of Boarderlands) even asking their gamers what they want? Do any of them send out surveys, or ask questions on their forums what the players want?
    Arcen has worked hard, within their budget, to do not only what they thought would make a good and saleable game, but also to ask their players on the devs forums what they thought would help make a better game, and like anyone that has any responsibility anywhere for anything, some decisions have to come home and be made by those that are paying for them, the devs. Hating them for not having mouse control is stupid. Talking vulgar and hate for not having 2 or 4 or 8 more frames of animation is stupid. Putting people down and railing on them like you have a perfect right to is STUPID! what have you ever made in the world and had people rail on you for? What painting, or story, or game, or poem, or opinion about the world have you thrown out there trying to make the world a better place and had people rail on you?
    You sound so full of hate it is not even funny, and you know what? If you looked at what you were hating on so much, and then said... "Hey, the game is an entertainment. It's ten bucks, it's made by somebody that asked me what i thought was challenging and cool, and interesting, and within budget... and here I am HATING on them? You know what? I was going to try and 'reason' with you, but that won't work, because you know what I think I finally figured out? You're not here to make any constructive and helpful criticisms to make the game better. You're just here to dump on the game, and the developers. And if the game were not here, or the developers were office guys making office software instead of games... then you would be off somewhere else hating on someone else. Not to make things any better for any of them... but because I get the feeling that hating on things and somebody else gets your rocks off, or it makes you feel good somehow.
    Which is really a shame, you know?
    Because you could be here on the planet to make someone happy, and have them make you happy and have kids and raise a family and pay bills and have hard days and good days, just like the rest of us on this planet, and have someone love you for it when you come home and make you feel like what you were doing made life better for them and they loved you for it...
    And maybe one of these days you will, and if you run across someone, out there in the world hating on someone else, maybe you'll say something and make a difference, not only for who is being hated on, but for the haters too.
    Anyway, stop the hating and try to make a game yourself, and see how easy it is (it isn't) and how many people like it, and how many people want to dump on it? You know it would break your heart to want to make something cool and to try very, very hard to do it, and have people dump on you.
    It would.
    Its not cool.
    You wouldn't want it.

    Thanks for listening,

  11. I think you should make the game you damn well want to make and call it a day.

    I'ts been a long time since a developer gave me a sequel for free just because I bought the original. That says a lot. Though honestly, if there's one thing I don't really agree with, it's probably that (I'd hate to see a game company I really enjoy go under because it didn't make enough money)

  12. I apologise if I sound condescending, it's not my intent, but all this anger flying about is incredibly childish and I'm shocked it's being given this much attention.

    I honestly wish you gentlemen the best, Arcen has always produced sincere and risky games and I respect you for that. Stay the course, ignore the vocal minority (who follow every creative product about complaining and never just leaving for something that makes them happy) and make what you want to make, AI Wars showed us that your audience will find you. Even if it all comes crashing down in the end at least you did it on your own terms.

  13. FWIW, after reading this thread after being asked to (indirectly) by the lead dev Chris Park from another forum:

    "Whether you agree with me on mouse aim or not, I think we can all agree that the comments there are unjustified and really out of hand."

    I don't see it! The comments here aren't that out of control... I think Mr. Chris Park is a maybe a skosh on the thin skinned side. It's all good man, these are people who had enough interest to play your games and needed to vent on you for being a "dummy" and forgoing mouse support - that's no reason to get offended at them.

    As a lead developer myself, now really just a project manager that specializes in leading other devs, I get negative feedback all the time about various edicts I initially set out to champion as The Way Forward(tm). Getting contradictory feedback from other smart developers happens to me in my meetings a lot... I just roll with it and smile. Because you know what? I *don't* have all the answers.

    If I were to stop, "Oh! You implied I called other people retards for not agreeing with my call, well I never! Dammit, I'm gonna swallow my tongue now in a little taking-umbrage fit and call for backup against you're out of control viewpoint"...

    OK, that causes the situation to get worse in and of itself. I get bright devs who want to derail my meetings all the time (usually the same ones), a smile, a little self depreciating humor, and taking a look at what they're saying is always The Best Response(tm).

    My response to the same comment would be: "Yeah... I do think you're a bunch of retards for not agreeing with my decision to pursue cardinal direction aiming with a gamepad/keyboard to capture an 8-bit gaming retro vibe. But, since you G*damn retards appear to be coming out of the woodwork in numbers since I've implemented my genius, I'm going to be a marketing slut and implement the best mouse aiming game I can now just to shut you up. Since you bought my game, I'll love you anyway, even though you're dumb. Cheerio!"

    "Well! I take offense to your implications I made rude implications! (yadda yadda yadda)" Bad Call(tm), man... Wrong way to handle it, you might as well say "yeah, the ball's out of my court now".

    Anyway, just a few random thoughts on a humorous thread for a geek like me that even cares about such silly issues. We're all specialized geeks here - so everyone play nice! ;-)

    1. And as a cross-correlation, since this thread is ostensibly about mouse free aim versus 8-way cardinal direction aiming, you know what a much much bigger game aiming question is you guys should be on about? (imo, anyway.) PS3 Move aiming shooters and things like the PC Razor Hydra.

      My biggest fear is console gamers on the PS3 aren't gonna realize what a revolution the Playstation Move is for playing FPS and over-the-shoulder 3rd person shooters for aiming. It's the best of both worlds, you get that console vibe of a real controller in your hands vs. mouse/keyboard, but you also get decent aiming that's semi comparable to playing an FPS on the PC.

      But it takes work, you gotta calibrate for lazing on the couch while waving the wand in a reclined offset position, and the thick-headed retards who comprise the mainstream console shooter fans aren't getting it in enough numbers yet, it might not take off!

      They think PS Move is simply a work out thing for chicks and shouldn't become a part of the canon for console shooters at all. They actively petition devs to not support PS Move in their game forums for shooters. Am I the only one who sees they're thick headed dummies who don't get it? They should be imploring devs to support this for console shooters.

      Ah well, such is life.

  14. Quoted from the forum post: "I have to be honest, at this point the game isn't exactly ripping up the sales charts. Which is pretty obvious I guess if you look at the sales ranking on Steam. Valley 1 was hovering in the #8 to #9 slot for several days after coming out, but Valley 2 has only reached #75 that I've seen. The steam forums were filled with moaning about the mouse controls and practically nothing else. In the end I'm not willing to burn the house down because I don't want some condescending/entitled folks to "cheat." I've had at least two reviewers harassing me about that, too; one in a review, one prior to a review."

    I'm sorry to say it but it's my opinion that Arcen has unfortunately managed to shoot themselves in the foot regarding the sales.

    Let me explain where I'm coming from; about three years ago I discovered A.I. War on steam and absolutely loved it. Since then I've been following Arcen and to this date I have purchased every Arcen game and DLC that has been released, both because I generally liked the games and because I wanted to support a developer that makes games I enjoy. Going by what many people say, that has not been uncommon behavior amongst the Arcen games fanbase.

    I also bought AVWW 1 while it was still in its early stages and I have to say that I really enjoyed the game. I liked the setting, the story, the gameplay and the overall design, too.

    Now here's the problem: I got the second game for free.

    Don't get me wrong, it's great that Arcen is giving me and every other AVWW 1 owner the second game for free.
    However, under such circumstances I'm not surprised the game scored so very low on the steam sales chart.

    For one thing the game is kind of a metroidvania - exploration - strategy mix. The second game of the series, despite concentrating more heavily on the platformer part and not being open-ended like the first one, is still a metroidvania - exploration - strategy mix. I would venture a guess that by the time of release of AVWW 2 every gamer interested in metroidvania - exploration - strategy mix games already owned the first game and thus got the second one free of charge.

    Added to that is the fact that all the people who are like me and have bought every Arcen game so far (and often on release for full price) also have the game for free now. Now, I like to support Arcen but that was by buying the games. I already own AVWW 2 now and as much as I like Arcen, I'm not going to buy something twice that I already own.

    Which brings me to the loud outcry about the original controls. I would say that was to be expected. Since the original game didn't do so well in terms of sales, the second game was supposed to go in another direction to attract more people. However, all those who owned the original game already got the sequel in beta for free.

    Now, those who didn't like the original won't say much about it but it's to be expected that those who did like the original would be rather vocal about the parts they liked but wouldn't find in the sequel. Which was mainly the keyboard and mouse control. Not to mention that the steam community in general is rather PC game centric and cutting back on modern PC game controls in favor of flavor to make the game more retro "classic game" is not something that's going to fly well at that place.

    So unfortunately I fear all of this stems more from Arcen standing in their own way than anything else.

  15. So much rage for no reason here. He's laid out his reasons for the original design choice while still catering to those of us who disagree. Either way, the game is now playable on whatever terms you want and the controls are quite smooth. Really guys stop complaining and enjoy the game. It takes balls for a developer to be this honest and hes not looking down on those of us who disagree. I personally prefer mouse and keyboard but I understand why it was originally held back. Regardless of preference this game is excellent.

  16. I know this is late, but I want to post my (more reasonable than most) thoughts on this as someone who hated the original controls.

    I have ZERO problem with using a keyboard to play. I agree that for platformers generally a keyboard or gamepad is far better and more natural.

    That said - this is a game with directional aiming. Directional aiming in a platformer means a very dynamic environment where you will aim down while jumping, jump while aiming forward, and all manner of combinations of the controls. With a gamepad, you are limited to a certain number of angles (unless you're using an analog stick, in which case the whole debate is moot).

    That means that the game is limited in difficulty and complexity. I loved the first game - the controls were fluid and you felt like you had complete control over your aiming and your movement.

    When I tried AVWW2's keyboard scheme, I found it unplayable and awkward. It was/is not a matter of willingness to learn - it is a matter of the control scheme seeming unintuitive and just plain "bad". I could design a keyboard control scheme that would be perfectly playable to me, but in the version I tried there was no key rebinding (at least not that I could find). It would still be awkward, because aiming and movement are tied together, however.

    If you want to make a shooting platformer where you have very limited aiming, you have to make the enemies, environments, and everything else reflect that. Instead, even in the tutorial, you had us doing incredibly awkward things that would be easy with the AVWW1 controls. Jump and aim down and shoot these things to get down, for example.

    The worlds are still procedurally generated, and enemies still move freely - this means that I'll need to aim in ways that the new controls simply DO NOT ALLOW in order to hit them, or else jump around and try to get the angle to the enemy to line up. That doesn't make for a fun experience, gamepad or not - it makes for a frustrating one.

    Look at Castlevania - it does what you're trying to do, but the attacks do not have any manual aiming. This makes the enemies harder to hit, yes, but you aren't trying to fight with an aiming system.

    Look at Metroid - the enemies move along the walls, the ground, etc. If something flies, it does so in a predictable pattern at a height where you can hit it with the predefined angled shots.

    In AVWW2, you flounder around with the controls in an effort to do something that you remember being effortless in AVWW1. Sure, if you try really hard you might become competent with the controls enough to play. I believe, though, that the game was designed poorly for those very controls, and it begs for free (or at least free-ER) aiming.

    I'm not "butthurt" that you made the choice you did, I just feel it was implemented poorly - both the controls, and the game in relation to the controls. I'd rather have it overly easy but comfortable than mindblowingly difficult due to bad design - that is a problem you'd see all the time on old systems like the NES, and that has been behind us for a long time.

    Super Meat Boy is something you brought up as an example - I played it with a keyboard, and would have preferred a D-Pad.. but there is no shooting or aiming in Super Meat Boy. It's a pure platformer - that's a pretty unfair comparison, in my opinion.

    Name me a single successful platformer-shooter hybrid where you have to aim using a very small number of fixed angles while navigating a very dynamic platforming environment and shooting unpredictable enemies with AI rather than dumb patterns. I can't think of a single one!

    1. I think the perfect analogy is this:

      Imagine playing something like the Battlefield series of FPS games using a keyboard-only FPS control scheme. You want to aim at a helicopter? Sure, just make sure it's not too high up and maybe you'll hit it. Oh crap, that guy is on a ledge behind you! Turn around and back up so he is in view and your gun can hit him within your fixed aiming angle! I could keep going but I think the example comes across enough from that.


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