View Full Version : 5th Quest Voting Time!

07-01-2014, 02:42 AM
[edit] WIP. I'll edit this later. Post a separate thread or PM me if you have any questions.

Sorry for taking so long guys. I should have done this a few months ago. Anyway, it's time to start wrapping this contest up. The main problem here is we've had 17 total quest entries, and to top it all off at least half of them were pretty freaking good. So we've got to narrow it down a bit, preferably to the top 3 quests, although a top 6 would be no skin off my nose.

Note: This is not a poll. You must physically rate any quests you have played in order for your vote to count. You can also review or give thoughts on any particular quest, which is always nice for authors to read, though it is not required.

Obviously you can only rate quests that you've actually played--please don't abuse this privilege, so state how much of the quest you've fared, preferably in terms of levels since this is usually fairly uniform (dungeons will typically get larger as level increases anyway). For continuity and ease of tallying let's keep the rating in base 10--for example 9.7 out of 10, or 97 out of 100 would be fine. At the very least we need an "overall" rating, however component ratings are very welcome. These might be:

NES Consistency:
Fun/Intangibles Factor:
Difficulty Curve/Consistency:
Overall [required]

You may use whatever rating system that best suites you personally, though please use the same rating system for each and every quest that you've played.

It is also not necessary to score minor bugs (such as blank under-combos for instance) since these will be--and may have already been--fixed before final release, so as a general rule you can simply omit them unless there were somehow an astonishingly egregious amount that affected playability. Entrants were allowed to fix minor issues after all, so you may have played an earlier revision of the quest than everyone else.

All entrants are assumed to of given a prefect score of 100 to their own quests, so voting for one's self is not necessary (This effectively cancels each other out). You may however override that score with something else if you so wish, but it is not necessary to simply rate your own quest.

Disclaimer: No shenanigans. No proxy or double voting. New users with a post count of zero will not be counted unless of course you are a standing member of the purezc community.

07-01-2014, 03:27 AM
OK, here are my votes so far:

The DQ club: PeteAndWally: Overworld changing
Shoelace: Dungeon graphics, mechanics, Death Knights
Scootoloo: Using a non-standard tileset.

OK, now for the fun stuff (if you're looking for more full reviews read the threads)

Difficulty: 95/100 (may be too hard, might need to be toned down for the final version, but I enjoyed it a bit. 15 games)
NES Authenticity: 95/100 (probably towed the line the best out of all the quests for this and balancing new stuff)
Fun Factor: 70/100 (had frustrating points, I can see why some people didn't like it, but this is following NES rules here. He did the best he could)
Overall: 86.67/100

Difficulty: 98/100 (VERY hard, 5 games on a 2nd run)
NES Authenticity: 85/100 (didn't follow enemy groups)
Fun Factor: 80/100
Overall: 86.67/100

Chris Miller:
Difficulty: 80/100. (Level 9 was perfect for me, though the Wizzrobes might need a new color, 3 gamesr)
NES authenticity: 90/100 (broke enemy groups)
Fun Factor: 70/100
Overall: 80/100

Difficulty: 50/100 (harder than 2nd, but still subpar 3 games)
NES Authenticity: 95/100
Fun Factor: 80/100
Overall Score: 73/100

Love For Fire
Difficulty: 99/100 (balance is solid, five games)
NES authenticity: 25/100 (had some weird mechanics)
Fun Factor 90/100 (was a very fun quest despite its flaws)
Overall: 71.3/100

Difficulty: 98/100 (balanced, 13 games)
NES authenticity: 10/100(Mirror Shield, Conveyor Belts)
Fun Factor: 95/100 (good creativity)
Overall: 67.6/100

Difficulty: 30/100 (1 game)
NES Authenticity: 99/100 (very accurate)
Fun Factor: 50/100 (needed more creativity)
Overall: 59.67/100

Difficulty: 93/100 (kinda hard-ish, 18 games)
Fun Factor: 85/100 (had frustrating spots, but easily the most creative quest of the bunch)
NES authenticity: 0/100 (you know why)
Overall: 59.3/100

Difficulty: 0/100 (Very Easy, possibly runnable early, 3 games)
NES authenticity: 99/100 (easily the most accurate)
Fun Factor: 50/100
Overall: 46.67/100

Difficulty: 0/100 (easier than the 1st quest, attempted to run it midway through)
NES Authenticity: 50/100 (Octorocks On Crack)
Fun Factor: 50/100 (barely any use of the enemy editor)
Overall: 33.3/100
(more coming soon, Gleeok orders me to bed)

And now, for the DNF club (which will be 0/100 because I picked them up and couldn't finish them. Some say this might be cruel, but it's your responsibility as a quest designer to playtest your quest and make sure they can be finished. All of these I played had major issues leading to incompletes)

Sylph: Had a bug in the Stalfos room in Level 1 where it respawned over the river and I couldn't get the key to advance without serious resetting. Because this is Level 1, this will frustrate the player and lead to them getting angry. Person also never showed up on the boards after it was reported.

ZCFan: I might be a bit biased on the mark here, but I didn't like Level 9 on the first screen and the corner swords. Also, there were mazes out of place and it was one hell of a frustrating experience. I generally did not like this one at all. Needs cleaning up.

QuestWizard88: You had the classic problem of making the beginning levels too insanely hard that no one could pass them. You've won before, you should know better than this. With the expectations of you winning before, this is totally unacceptable. Even I toned down from my usual difficulty for this contest.

I abstain from Travster's because he changed his quest entirely, but his first effort (and the hard one from what I heard) were not too good.

I'm also going to make some final comments:

I truly appreciate the work you guys put in. Game Development is not easy, it takes years of practice. While some are creative heads, people have to understand in a job you are handed a script and you pretty much need to follow it. There was leeway here, but the script basically was "Create something Zelda 1 style that could play on the NES." While some liberties were taken, the NES respect had to be followed. Hell, I even had to make some major changes to fit this. I know several PureZC people don't like this and some other people don't, but that's the way game development is. The boss told you to make a Zelda 1 style game, if you didn't, then you most likely won't be featured.

On that note, some people had some really fun quests. Love For Fire, Imzogelmo, CJC, Shoelace, I'd definitely give second looks to and maybe if they don't win deserve to have a proper development cycle and expanded. You may not win due to authenticity, but it was an enjoyable piece of work, and in some players' eyes, that might be a winning factor.

I apologize for somewhat harsh grading at times, but it had to be done. I might sound like the bad college professor here on that, if I come across like that, take it up with me on PM. It's no slight against you.

Last, but not least, if you had a bad effort, I could go into failed projects and failed efforts of my own. The fact you completed a quest puts you at a large advantage over many aspiring people. If I were you, I'd dust yourself off, hold your head high, don't get overconfident, and either edit your work with a new tileset and development cycle, or if you're totally not happy, use it as a learning experience on your next project. I guarantee you that you'll do better the second time around.

Good luck everyone.


07-05-2014, 02:18 AM
I won't get into full reviews because it has been half a year since I played any fifth quests, but I do have some things to say.

Nightmare (Completed)
Overall 73
The difficulty curve on this quest is... unusual. It starts easier than first and spikes up harder than third by the fifth dungeon. I wasn't overly fond of the bare floor statue shooter darknut rooms, particularly in dungeon five (which had an inverted difficulty, rooms got easier close to the boss). I like to have some water to sit on if I don't have the magic sword yet, and this quest did not oblige. Not everyone likes to dance with darknuts.

BTJCraft (Completed)
Overall 60
I liked BTJs quest, particularly the sixth dungeon. The difficulty curve may not have been great for a fifth quest, but his dungeon six was one of the best I have ever played.

Chris Miller (Dungeon 7)
Overall 55
This quest started out strong but it began to feel like a grind a little over halfway through. The early dungeons were exciting (if not a little difficult) but the late dungeons (particularly the fairy dungeon) just felt like blenders.

ZCFan (Dungeon 1)
Overall 27
The find the sword gimmick was exhilirating and breathed new life into the early overworld play. It's very refreshing to have screens that are familiar suddenly be dangerous again because you are completely defenseless. Unfortunately I did not care for ZCFan's dungeon design, so I was unable to complete this quest.

I'm sure I played others but I can't remember them, sorry.

If it were possible, I wish we could take the best components of each quest and mix them together to form a "super" fifth... eh, maybe after the contest has ended.

07-05-2014, 10:43 AM
If it were possible, I wish we could take the best components of each quest and mix them together to form a "super" fifth... eh, maybe after the contest has ended.

This would be pretty cool too.


07-07-2014, 11:24 PM
Chris Miller
I really enjoyed this quest. Would rate it higher if there weren't enemy group problems. Just kinda odd going from 4 quests that dont break enemy groups to one that does. Oh well, if it wins it wins.

Completion:Level 4(watched most of the rest on Youtube)
This quest was a little unusual but seeing as 4th threw usual out of the door it more than qualifies as a possible 5th. It is difficult, but I intend to beat it eventually. I really like what Ive played and seen of it.

Completion:Level 8
I had a good bit of enjoyment from this quest.It was a little on the easy side from what I could play but it did an excellent job mimicking the NES design.

Completion: Don't remember exactly, at least 2 of the levels.
From what I played, this quest has a similar vibe to 4th in ways(Uses the black top water, lots of variation in room design) I liked what I played of it,but it got a little tedious figuring out what to do.(I'm not quite as patient a player as some.)

Completion:At least 4 of the levels
Where Nightmare would disqualify this one, I gave it a chance. Tileset issues aside, it was actually pretty decent. By no means very accurate as it broke enemy groups and used the cross, but I think it deserves mention as being a playable, interesting quest.

Completion:At least 3 of the levels
This one was pretty fun but a little difficult. I thought the doors shutting after defeating the enemies was an interesting idea, but it could have made for some annoying situations.

Completion:Not much.
Was a bit too hard. maybe, if I ever find time, I'll sit down and power through it just to prove I can beat it.But the basic difficulty curve may be a little too steep.

Honorable Mentions that dont quite fit the rules:
CJC's quest is epic and a must play for anyone who desires a fun Hyrule adventure. The Reskin is recommended.
Peteandwally did something very interesting with the overworld.
Shoelace also made a very fun quest. Got pretty far in it even though I knew it wouldnt fly. It has some incredible gimmicks although one in particular is quite annoying.

Quests that I didn't care for:
Travster: Exploration was not rewarding in this one, the difficulty seemed to jump around too much
ZCFan: Sorry, it looked cool at first, but kind of had annoying level design
BTJCraft: Something seemed a little stale about this one. I didnt get far enough in it to see if it improved.

Quests that I didnt play enough to rate and dont know enough about:
Love For Fire

That about wraps up my analysis. Apologies for not putting forth a better effort into beating them all, but I think I got a good enough glimpse at most of them.

07-08-2014, 08:20 PM
Same goes for me in that it's been a while since I've played any of the 5th quest entries. I went back and read the reviews I've previously posted to get a refresher. I didn't want to assign subcomponent scores for this round, but I'll likely be inclined to do so for the finalists. (In my previous reviews I usually included comments about difficulty/consistency, NES-authenticty, and intangibles/fun-factor). I'll keep the following comments about each quest relatively short but include links to my longer reviews.

In case it's not obvious from my scoring scale, just to be clear, I think BigJoe's and MischaPetya's quests are what I'd label the "first tier" quests, and the "second tier" would include the quests by Chris Miller, Nightmare, LoveForFire, and HeroOfFire. For sake of comparison, I'd say that my 0-10 rating scale is intended to roughly match the IMDB scale (per their top 250 list, the 250th best movie has a score of 8.0, and the top scoring movie has a score of 9.2).

Overall Score: 9.0
Review in quest thread: http://armageddongames.net/showthread.php?96102-5th-Quest-Entry-BigJoe&p=900450&viewfull=1#post900450

This quest is at the top of my list for many reasons. The pacing is excellent throughout the game, which I feel is one of the most important parts of getting a good "fun factor" score. The review in the above link is the longest review I wrote for any of the 5th quests, so I don't think I have much more that is new to say.

Overall Score: 8.8
Review in quest thread: http://armageddongames.net/showthread.php?96123-5th-Quest-Entry-MischaPetya&p=900472&viewfull=1#post900472

Oh man, the dungeons in this quest are great. Super-intricate-mazey dungeons all the way through level 6. I see that the difficulty was toned down a bit since I played this quest; there were previously a lot of firerobes and that made level 6 pretty difficult; I think it was a wise choice to tone it down a notch.

Chris Miller
Overall Score: 8.5
Review in quest thread: http://armageddongames.net/showthread.php?96036-5th-Quest-Entry-Chris-Miller&p=900350&viewfull=1#post900350

Reasonably challenging in levels 7-9 (the earlier levels are a bit easy imo), but fun throughout. This is the only quest on my list that I didn't finish (I got to Ganon's room with the red ring, but I could not find the silver arrow).

Overall Score: 8.3
Review in quest thread: http://armageddongames.net/showthread.php?95911-5th-Quest-Entry-Nightmare&p=899519&viewfull=1#post899519

This was the first of the 5th quests I played (the link above isn't much of a review but it does contain a number of my post-game thoughts and reflections.) The endgame (levels 7-9) is very fun to play, and it's definitely one of the more creative endgames that I played.

Overall Score: 8.2
Review in quest thread: http://armageddongames.net/showthread.php?96131-5th-Quest-Entry-Love-For-Fire&p=900451&viewfull=1#post900451

This quest has a clear beginning-game-difficulty (levels 1-4), middle-game-difficulty (levels 5-7), and end-game-difficulty (levels 8-9); if you're not ready for them, levels 5 and 8 will kick your butt. Lots of fun to play. Loses some points for questionable uses of small keys (see my review for more details). Along with Nightmare's quest, this quest has one of the more creative final dungeons.

Overall Score: 8.1
Review in quest thread: http://armageddongames.net/showthread.php?96135-5th-Quest-Entry-HeroOfFire&p=900353&viewfull=1#post900353

This quest has great pacing and is a lot of fun to play through level 7. The changing shutter script is a nice feature for diversifying the dungeon exploration. Unfortunately for this quest, levels 8 and 9 just didn't do it for me (those levels were too easy and too fast for endgame dungeons), and since they're at the end of the quest, that left a bad taste in mouth upon completing the game.

Overall Score: 7.6
Review in quest thread: http://armageddongames.net/showthread.php?96125-5th-Quest-Entry-Questwizard88&p=899901&viewfull=1#post899901

Perhaps unsurprisingly, this quest's dungeons had a similar feel to the 4th quest's dungeons, which I thought was great. I should mention that I didn't find the magic key, so I sort of broke level 9 by arriving with enough small keys to unlock only the doors that needed unlocking.

Overall, all of the above quests were very fun to play; I completed all quests on this list except for finding the silver arrow in Chris Miller's quest. I'd say +1 to most of what Nightmare wrote regarding the difficulty of developing games; I've tried several times over the years to make my own quests, but I could never muster the patience to see a project through to completion. Mad props to all of you for making some fun games.

I should admit that I exercised some selection bias in the quests I chose to complete. Since there were a lot of quests from which to choose, I didn't invest the time in those quests that I suspected would be disqualified (for hopefully obvious reasons); in particular, the quests of CJC and Shoelace come to mind. I completed the first 2 levels of both of those quests. Had there not been so many other 5th quests to play, I could easily see myself having committed the time to continue both of these quests, as what I had played was quite enjoyable.

Scootaloo - I made it to the power bracelet in level 3 of your quest, but I didn't finish level 3. Sorry I didn't get to play more of it. Fwiw, I didn't think the tileset was DQ-worthy (it's still the standard ZC set for the overworld, dungeons, and enemies, but a few sprites [Abei, Ama, some items] are changed to Zelda2 sprites). I remember being impressed by the few dungeons I had explored, but I was turned off by your eliminating a lot of overworld caves.

I also played (and completed with 0 deaths) an early version of Travster's quest that was much easier than the current difficult version.

I like the idea of combining levels from different quests to make a "super 5th quest". (Off the top of my head, I'd at least nominate a level with HeroOfFire's changing shutter script [probably level 2] and Nightmare's level 9).

Assuming we narrow the entries to a top 3 (or top X), I'll probably plan to re-play (or play for the first time any quests not in my list) those finalists and post my thoughts.

07-13-2014, 05:48 PM
Well, I gave most of my detailed comments on the boards for the appropriate maps, so I will just list my ratings, in greatest-to-least order as a summary: These ratings will be double what my commentary gave, to put them on a 10-point scale, as requested:

CJC: 8.14
Imzogelmo: 7.72
MischaPetya: 7.3
Love for Fire: 8
Scootaloo: 6.84
dcsy: 6.64
nightmare: 6.7
Shoelace: 6.56
Travster: 6.44
Bigjoe: 6
Pete and Wally: 6
T. McSwain: 5.72
Chris Miller: 5.3
Hero of Fire: 4.56
BtjCaraft: 4.48
Questwiard: DNC (level 5; got too frustrating to finish)

edit (7/21): I finished scootaloo's quest, and have placed it appropriately in my list.
edit (8/3): I finished T. Mcswain's quest, and have added it in appropriately.
edit (8/8): I finished Shoelace's quest, being the final one of the entries. List updated.

07-26-2014, 08:43 PM
I played through (and completed) 12 quests, then lost interest as other aspects of my life took over. Apologies to anyone whose quest I did not get to. My rankings of the 12 I completed:

(I did not give point values at the time, and am kinda winging it now, but anymore ...)

1) MischaPetya: 9.3 - Far and away the best dungeon layouts. Maybe a bit too 'linear', but everything can be found (though I did miss a Key somewhere in Level 6). Not quite as authentic as some other quests, but nothing 'way out there'. The dungeons are the primary reason I bump this one just ahead of the next.

2) BigJoe: 9.2 - The most 'authentic' quest I completed, with good difficulty. Doesn't really add to the genre, but the new creatures (really, just new color schemes) are well-suited to a sequel quest. I'm fine with the music, though it may have to go in order to be the 'official' 5th quest.

3) HeroOfFire: 8.7 - A highly 'polished' quest (some typos aside), and I loved the new item (which, to be fair, did appear in at least one other quest I played).

4) Nightmare: 8.5 - Very imaginative, particularly Level 9. One of my favorite 'new' villains. Suffered a bit from linear dungeons and a waste of what could have been awesome items.

5) Chris Miller: 7.7 - Level 9 was a killer (maybe too much, in comparison to every other dungeon), but still fair IMHO. Was my 2nd completion; only a couple beat it out.

6) CJC: 7.5 - Probably a 9.5 or higher on its own merit, but too far removed from the original. This one really should spawn its own 'Create your own quest' contests!

7) Shoelace: 7.3 - Similar to the previous one, as it probably works better as an 'original' quest than a 5th Quest. A lot of imagination here.

8) Imzogelmo: 7.0 - Scores high on the 'puzzle' aspect, perhaps the highest among the quests I played, but plagued by tedious sections and a buggy new item.

9) Questwizard88: 6.8 - Closer to 'authentic' than the ones just above, but not as much fun, and the grinding I had to do near the end was a pain. Also, not EVERY room in Level 9 needs bullet-firing statues!

10) Love For Fire: 6.6 - The quest definitely matches the creator's screenname. A lot of innovative ideas, but lacks a cohesive nature that's needed for authenticity.

11) Nethis: 6.4 - Not a fan of 'one-way' passages. I'm fine with 'small' dungeons, though they won't fit with a 5th Quest. Had a few 'fatal errors'. That I 'zeroed' the quest (won without losing a life) probably takes away from it.

12) dcsyxx: 6.2 - Loved the originality regarding dungeon layout. Levels 7 and 8 had (what I think was) a bug that allowed for speedy completion. Some items, I never did find. I didn't hate the quest, but I didn't care for it as much as the ones above.

13) peteandwally: 6.0 - I think the 'horizontal hold' was off on my screen! Otherwise, mediocre dungeon design which takes a long time to build up in difficulty.

14) zcfan27330: 4.2 - For me, the dropoff from the previous quest to this one is more than noticeable. A couple fatal errors, and some very UNimaginative dungeon layouts. Another one I completed early.

15) BtjCraft: 2.5 - I didn't mind the sophomorphic humor as much as some, but this was WAY too easy. A 'Monty Haul' quest if there ever was one. I did like the 'mid-Boss' of Level 6, though.

16) Travster: 1.8 - WAY, WAY, WAAAAAY too tough when I played it. (From what I read, this came after the quest was way, way too easy; gotta find that middle-ground.) Also didn't care for the palette swaps in what was supposed to be an 'authentic' sequel.

Did not complete: Scootaloo (turns out there was a bug in Level 7).

Never got to the quest by Sylph.

My two cents.

08-18-2014, 11:49 PM
Okay, I ran the math on the votes that have been tallied so far, and here are the standings as of this post:
HM stands for Honorable Mention, DNF stands for Did Not Finish. Scores on DNFs were not recorded. If a quest has lots of DNFs or only a few scores, it might be worth taking a closer look before determining the finalists. We may task Gleeok on making those calls.

MischaPetya (86.67 + 88 + 73) = 247.67/3 = 82.5567
BigJoe (86.67 + 90 + 60 + 92) = 328.67/4 = 82.1675
Nightmare (73 + 82 + 83 + 67 + 85) = 390/5 = 78
Love For Fire (71.3HM + 82 + 80) = 233.3/3 = 77.7667 (1 HM)
Chris Miller (80 + DNF + 90 + 85 + 53 + 77) = 385/5 = 77 (1 DNF)
QuestWizard (DNF + DNF + 76 + DNF) = 76 (3 DNF)
CJC (59.3HM + HM + HM + 81.4 + 75) = 215.7/3 = 71.9 (3 HM)
Imzogelmo (67.6HM + HM + 66 + 77.2 + 70) = 280.8/4 = 70.2 (2 HM)
HeroOfFire (73 + 60 + 81 + 45.6 + 87) = 346.6/5 = 69.32
Shoelace (HM + 65.6 + HM + HM +73) = 138.6/2 = 69.3 (3 HM)
Scootaloo (66 + 68.4 + DNF) = 134.4/2 = 67.2 (1 DNF)
Nethis (59.67 + 68 + 68.4 + 64) = 260.07/4 = 65.0175
PeteAndWally (HM + 60 + 60) = 120/2 = 60 (1 HM)
Dcsyxx (46.67 + 66.4 + 62) = 175.07/3 = 58.3567
T. McSwain (57.2) = 57.2
ZCFan (DNF + DNF + DNF + 42) = 42 (3 DNF)
Travster (DNF + 64.4 + 18) = 82.4/2 = 41.2 (1 DNF)
BTJCraft (33.3 + 60HM + DNF + 44.8 + 25) = 163.1/4 = 40.775 (1 HM 1 DNF)
Sylph (DNF) = (1 DNF)

The leading quests seem to be the ones that were played the most, and if we were to go strictly off this list the finalists would be MischaPetya, BigJoe, and Nightmare. That said, LoveForFire’s Honorable Mention could be grounds for considering it as a finalist instead of Nightmare, due to the close proximity of their scores.
Looks like I’m on the chopping block. Bummer, if those NES Authenticity scores weren’t part of the average I’d be sitting pretty. With Coyotek4’s 95 pre-authenticity and Nightmare’s 85 Fun Factor, I could have been sitting on an average of (85HM + HM + HM + 81.4 + 95) = 261.4/3 = 87.1333! Oh well, no use grousing over spilt contest! :P

08-19-2014, 01:19 AM
Thanks CJC! I hadn't bothered to calculate the raw averaging scores yet, and now I don't have to. I'll post the placement scores and the slightly normalized--perhaps with deviation--ratings in a bit. Also a few of my votes, which don't appear to change too much, strangely enough.

[EDIT] Ah shit. I have to do it all over again because everyone and their mommy edited their post... D:

08-19-2014, 02:13 AM
Should I recalculate with the actual score listings for DNFs instead of not counting them? Because some people supplied scores for DNFs and others did not, and sometimes the scores would harshly impact the average (for example, Nightmare rated DNFs at 0s whereas BigJoe and I rated them at 45 and 27 respectively). What's fair?

08-19-2014, 06:52 AM
Results: http://armageddongames.net/showthread.php?96641-First-Round-5th-Quest-Results!&p=903076#post903076

It looks pretty solid to me. I would've rated a top three out of what I played of BigJoe, ChrisMiller, and Nightmare. The rest didn't seem to quite get to that level.