Soft Escape 1.25

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Backstory (Unessential Reading):
This is an escape map which I made a long time ago while I was feeling sadistic, and I've recently updated and revised it. The premise of the game is to provide an escape map where the challenge is quite simple and understandable, but very difficult to accomplish! It's not a puzzle/thinking challenge at all, just hand-eye co-ordination.

It's a shared solo experience: each player progresses on their own with infinite lives, it's not a team game at all. However, you may watch how the people behind you are doing (which is amusing, quite often).

This map is hard. Hard like a brick of steel. As I say, this was initially designed to make people ragequit, and while it is quite successful at that, I realise that there are some people who are hardcore escapees, who really enjoyed it and made it through a lot of levels. So in respect to the hardcore dudes and dutchesses, I'm uploading this for anyone to play.

So what's new about Soft Escape, as opposed to the other 150 or so currently on the Hive? A fair bit, I'm pleased to say. Read on for more...





Features (Juicy Bits):
Right, as well as your regular moving obstacles, there are several terrain types to make life harder; as follows:
  • Abyss == Die
  • Hot Coals == Die, if you stop moving.
  • Poison == Die, but gradually.
  • Tracks == Moves you in their direction at a constant rate. Like a moving walkway or travellator.
  • White Ice == Regular ice, you slide and can turn around.
  • Dark Ice == Slide, but no turning around.
  • Soft Ice == Slide, but accelerating and deaccelerating based on which way you're facing and what slope you're on.
Some of the later levels have icy half-pipes and ski slopes and other cool stuff. There are bumpers like in pinball on the soft ice, so you bounce off them.

The other main feature is that this game is extremely difficult, and it takes a long time to complete the current 20 levels back to back. Expect to die hundreds of times if you want to win. There is a code provided at each savepoint (level) which can be used to return to that level within the first 30 seconds of a new game. Observer chat is strongly preferred for this, to avoid ruining new players' games.

Custom Music has been included: six tracks, one of which will play on any given level. There is also a new multiboard showing each player's level, deaths, and total deaths. Finally, I included a command (-sd red) which shows every point where a given player has died. There are also some other funny things to find...

Screenies!:
softescape1.jpg

softescape2.jpg

softescape3.jpg


Get carried by your friends! Download the new CO-OP RELEASE

The map is 100% mine, and it is protected (but you can get a rugged chassis including code for all the obstacles here). I have no credits to give, other than to Escape Editor in which I first began by escape editing career (a cool map!), and Magos' Model Editor which is a damn handy tool.

Only try this if you think you're hardcore with escapes. It's that difficult.

Keywords:
Soft, Softmints, Escape, Maze, Hard, Impossible, Sadist, Masochist, Suffering, Hate, Anger, Pain, Depression, Misery, Gloom, Suffering, Anguish, Agony
Contents

Soft Escape 1.25 (Map)

Reviews
02:36, 18th Sep 2009 ap0calypse: Approved / Reviewed (sorry for the very late response: I finished this map - meaning every level - in 3 days, but then I got my new PC and lost track of this map). This certainly is a good map, it is very hard...

Moderator

M

Moderator

02:36, 18th Sep 2009
ap0calypse: Approved / Reviewed

(sorry for the very late response: I finished this map - meaning every level - in 3 days, but then I got my new PC and lost track of this map).

This certainly is a good map, it is very hard, challenging and it features something that other escapes do not have: soft ice.
The movement of creeps is sometimes really well done, the terrain is finally different from other escapes, luckily there are codes for the levels (since it's impossible to finish this in 1 run), though I would recommend a real save/load system (perhaps save the level, and how many times the player died, or how long he has been playing - at the end he can see how long he has been playing, or the insane amount of deaths).

At the end a random "skate-park" would be nice (something like 2 ramps with the soft ice, a lot of bumps, ...)
The teleport might be annoying for other players, but well... it didn't annoy me anyway.

A good addition to escape-maps.
 
Level 2
Joined
Dec 30, 2008
Messages
16
I realy like this map. Now I am stuck on level 6 and that circle of baldes seems impossible, but I will keep trying!
 
Level 27
Joined
Jan 26, 2007
Messages
4,788
I love this game, because you have finally succeeded in granting my wishes: new features.
Yeah, some maps included slopes, some included obstacles, but you've actually done something with them and let them change the speed, or turn them into pinball bumpers!
The terrain was (finally, after all those escapes) an improvement, only the ice was a bit dissapointing (I hate the edges...), but really: you need custom textures for that.

Tthe gameplay is... well... I'm still trying to figure that part out o_O
I'll try to get to the soft ice and bumpers, after that I'll moderate it :) (if I didn't destroy my pc, or launched my BitDefenders "File Shredder" on the map by then).

Well, I expect this to be a good map... I'm still at level 4, but I'll get there... once :)
You definitely made a good anti-mod protection by the way... this map is hard to review o_O
 
Level 5
Joined
Jul 21, 2005
Messages
120
The maps good, Its somewhat enjoyable but some of the difficulty seems rather silly, like level 3 being harder then four and so forth. The thing about level three is that you introduce the tile at the END of the round, so it takes an additional 100 lives to do that level. A guy was never actually able to get past that level over a course of 2.5 hours.

As for the Bumpers, that level is COMPLETELY based off of luck. COMPLETELY. There is no skill involved, just simply dropping your guy down the edge and finding out where he lands. ONCE I got close, but that was because I rushed to the edge from the Blade of Doom..

Yet, I dislike the map. Why? It's based off of trial and error, you have to be EXACT with nearly EVERYTHING. Seriously. Being forced to cut corners or at least try to cut them? At least change the tile through editing so the corners don't show. This helps us tremendously.
 
Level 14
Joined
Jun 3, 2005
Messages
209
Ah, that'd be level 4 (the one with soft ice at the end, the first time it's encountered). I realised this issue during earlier testing, and have decided to devote level 5 (one with the helicoptors) to introducing soft ice, and making a few puzzles with it, ending with the same puzzle as is currently in level 4. Level 4 will get something else instead (don't know what yet).

That's fair comment about the bumpers; no-one I tested with got to that level, so it was untested. I'll revise it to remove the luck factor. It is mathematically sound, but I guess it's too precise to be skill-based.

The diamond tile was also brought up, I'm going to make a request for a square version.

If you find any of the other levels to be too luck-based, please let me know and I'll make adjustments accordingly. Thanks for the review.
 
Level 7
Joined
Sep 19, 2007
Messages
81
Great game tons of fun, i give it 10/10 its is hilarious to watch noobs play and a few times i felt like smaking my head agaisnt a brick wall till i died. but as Sworddragon has said lvl 14 with bumpers is ridiculous but i figured it out then died when walking up the path (then i quit lol to tired of it) the trick is simple enuff go completly straight into the big one then ull bounce up path keep looking right thenturn up when ur 50% down the path for the second time the rest is self explanitory.

10/10 mint ur a mazing god please make more like this

Also jst some advice make lvl 9,10,11 way harder i can beat them all without dieing and thats not fun! And adding more spells for deaths (while i did 1-14 in 30 min my bud decided to suicide for 30 min and got like 1000+ deaths)
 
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Level 4
Joined
Dec 24, 2005
Messages
54
Recession for "Soft Escape 1.00"

Hi Softmints,

this is the first good escape here on hive i have seen the last months! :thumbs_up:
Your terrain is good, the enemy units are unclickable and your systems works really nice. I have found no bugs at all...
Your gravity and sliding systems must be really hard to code... :eek:
This map has awesome new ideas in it and many different paths (lava, poison etc.)
It's also the hardest (possible) escape i have ever played! (and i played lots of escapes, believe me^^)
The save codes are a very good idea to make this map possible. I think it's also unplayable in bnet. At this escape you have really no chance to win with delay!

You could maybe add a quest-log with tips, change-log, credits etc. and add a few camera commands (camera bound to hero, change angle...). What's with messages bound to the death counter? Think about a hall of fame on this hive page for those who reached levels above 10... I think you should also add a good loading screen (150 kbytes more map size don't annoy at all)

I played your escape 5 hours yesterday and reached level 15... :grin:. The last level really got me stuck, i don't have any idea how to come through that crater without die in that black terrain piece in middle o_O.

This map gets a !!10/10!! AWESOME :spell_breaker: +Rep :spell_breaker:

Greetings
Kill3rbeast

(I'm interested... do you know my escapes? If not look at my signature)
 
Level 3
Joined
Jul 24, 2009
Messages
37
I felt that the hardest level was the first. It could be a difficulty ramp but maybe i got used to playing mazes as i generally don't like mazes.
 
Level 13
Joined
Dec 4, 2007
Messages
1,109
Ugh, we just played it... (Me and some folks from Ngo, you might remember^^ facto and darktempler)

It's indeed "disturbingly" hard. Especially with b.net ping. Managed to get pass level1... yeah and that's it.

Will have to go for it another time, with better ping.

Was entertaining anyhow, seeing your mates fail and fail again, lol @ the Trollface popping up over someone who has lost 100 lifes ;D...

Gj
 
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Level 6
Joined
Apr 11, 2011
Messages
175
Official Basic Review of V3H -


Terrain 6/10 - Better then a lot of mazes
Concept & Idea 5/10 - It differ's a bit from other mazes.
Triggers 2/10 - Corrupted so I had to rebuild the map to see the triggers.
Object Data 7/10 - Good amount of different encounters and secret effects.
Overall Map Data 6/10 - Nice placement and use of stuff.
Estimated effort spent into this 6/10 -
Playability & Improveable 9/10 - It is quite fun but I can't seem to get past the ice ramp at level 14.

Overall Mark - 41/70

Any questions about the review, just ask and I will answer.

Suggestions -
Maybe a unprotected version for people who ask so they can learn how to make better maze maps.
Maybe a custom editor in-game where you can make your own custom levels if you have a code.
More encountered objects.
More levels.
Maybe a bit easier on level 4 and 12?
Screenshots of different/more levels?
Maybe a unique level where you have to climb similar to soft ice but instead a ability you must press to continue grabbing onto the ground so you don't slide down and maybe just a small jump so if the terrain is too high you can still keep going.
 
Level 14
Joined
Jun 3, 2005
Messages
209
There have been a couple of people asking for an unprotected version of Soft Escape. I decided I'd upload the map without most of the levels, but with a chassis off which anyone can build an escape using Soft Escape's obstacles. You will need to know some Jass to see what's going on, and the obstacles are not generated dynamically (though this would be an easy thing to set up).

The most interesting bits here are the later obstacles such as pinwheels/pinrings, wolves, bumpers, and particularly Soft Ice.

I hope someone finds it entertaining or useful.

:ogre_hurrhurr:
 

Attachments

  • Soft Escape Unprotected Release.w3x
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Level 1
Joined
Mar 22, 2012
Messages
1
Ahh Yes Softmints I Have Beaten level 1-14 but i am stuck on 15. lol i can get past the first part but the 2nd part is kinda hard.
 
Level 1
Joined
Oct 9, 2012
Messages
8
Finally!!!

Finally me and my friend beat this!!! We are through all 22 levels of hell! Once we were stuck on...16 I think? the huge soft ice crater. We gave up and beat it just few days ago! Today we finished level 20, 21 and 22. 20 was pretty hard, but 21 was too easy. 22 was fun=) We feel like escape bosses now lawl;p

Thank you very much for creating this greatest escape map ever!!!
 

EdgeOfChaos

E

EdgeOfChaos

Hey softmints, I have some suggestions.

-mentor command: allows you to select a player (example: -mentor 1 is red) and go back to their level. Your deaths don't count there, and stage advancement doesn't work. This would be for the purpose of showing people how to play a certain stage. -unmentor would turn it off.

-zoom ####: zooms to a certain distance.

Let people choose from different model files for their escaper.

Make level 6 easier and level 8 harder.

(edit)
When the moderator reviewed this, was he playing an old version? He said he finished the entire game in 3 days - if that was on the current version, he must be the most insane mazer ever...
 
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Level 14
Joined
Jun 3, 2005
Messages
209
I have yet to receive a replay of someone beating every level of Soft Escape, so officially it remains an open challenge. Personally I'm not convinced without proof. :crazz:

If I were still maintaining this map there's a lot of things I'd do differently, along with a couple of things I'd add. Probably not changing model files, since the aesthetic simplicity of the map is something I like compared to similar games. Difficulty tuning, quite a bit since I know certain levels have proven way harder than I anticipated, and the mechanics should have been introduced more gradually.

Tell you what. If someone ever officially beats Soft Escape 1.25 (with replays to prove it), I'll release a new version with new content. :csup:
 

EdgeOfChaos

E

EdgeOfChaos

I doubt anyone can. Some of the puzzles have such short timings that it's almost humanly impossible to do them. (10, 17, 19, and 22 come to mind).

Only way I can possibly think to beat some are using speed-down and save state hacks.

The difficulty isn't necessarily a bad thing, it just means you'll almost surely never see the replay.

(edit) To clarify: When we played, you took almost 90 deaths on level 10, and you were blinking past the first part. If you could pass the first part with an average of 10 deaths, you'd already be up to 900 deaths on one level. For someone like me, who can only pass the first part in 50-100 deaths, it could take me 5000-10000 deaths to win the stage.

This isn't necessarily a flaw though. Just difficult.

The only big flaw in this game I have seen is how you tend to introduce new obstacles at the end of levels. For example, the Wolves come at the very end of level 11. This makes it nearly impossible to learn how to do the wolves, as it takes like... 50 deaths every time to beat the first part of the stage. That's really frustrating :\. Because of this problem, I'd say the only way to beat soft escape in a reasonable amount (under 100,000?) deaths is to use save cheating.

Also a -zoom command would be so useful..

(edit 2) Sorry, one more thing. Why can't you see players ahead of you? It's fun to watch players on previous levels, but even more fun to watch players ahead of you and see their talent.
 
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Level 14
Joined
Jun 3, 2005
Messages
209
That's pretty much what I'm saying. Introduce new mechanics more gradually, and tune difficulty to not be so spiky (examples: last part of level 4 is way too hard too early, level 6 being too difficult to time, level 12 is too long, level 21 requires knowledge more than execution...). I'd prefer to see the game's content distributed over 30-40 levels. But that takes a lot of time to design, tune, and polish, and I've got other projects.

Not being able to see players on future levels is partly because you're supposed to focus on the level at hand, and partly because people will look at the next level and give up. I'm sure opinions differ about this, but that's my reasoning.
 

EdgeOfChaos

E

EdgeOfChaos

That would be really awesome if you ever decide to edit the game a bit, but I understand - it is a lot of work. That's ok though, the current version is awesome too; I'd give it a 6/5 if I could. Thank you for making it.
 
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Level 25
Joined
Aug 18, 2009
Messages
4,081
If there was a team version, this was actually playable in multiplayer. Current way, part of players always get stuck in the game because they are either bad in general or one is bad with a certain spot. There is no merit playing it in multiplayer if it's all about solo pve.
 
Level 25
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Aug 18, 2009
Messages
4,081
Another thing: I do not think you can build meaningful difficulty with sheer pinpoint timing. The player won't feel in the wrong if his decision is the right one but cannot hit the same 10ms time slot or narrow spot over and over again. Therefore, I would grant him some more freedom, in places embed some more randomness, add an alternative route or shuffle them. At the moment it gets highly repetitive since the execution of actions hardly varies.
 
Level 14
Joined
Jun 3, 2005
Messages
209
Soft Escape is intended as a test of mechanical skill; there is no place for randomness in the game. That said, many puzzles require too much precision (level 4, level 10, many later ones). The compromise is that instead of placing a lot of weight on a single high-precision mechanical test, there should be several medium-precision tests, and the player's consistency in achieving them becomes the deciding factor. So it becomes difficult to win or to lose on sheer luck.

There should never be a challenge that the player resorts to just throwing themselves at in the hopes of passing, so reducing that as much as possible (level 6) is a goal of mine.
 

EdgeOfChaos

E

EdgeOfChaos

Wow! I can hardly believe it. Thanks so much, softmints. I'm going to try the co-op as soon as I get home!

As for 1.5, I'm very excited. I have lots and lots of small, level-specific suggestions (as well as a couple big ones) that I can post a bit later if you want to hear them. Or if you're fine balancing without them, that's fine too. Thanks again for deciding to continue this!
--------------------------------------------------------
Level suggestions:

Level 1:
Change the two shadow walkers a bit. Right now, if you play long enough, they seem to get out of order and make the level a lot harder (hurts those who are bad at escapes and can't beat level 1 quickly)

Level 2:
Maybe make the double-shadow-walker part a little bit more forgiving. This is pretty difficult, especially considering that you have to beat the first part first, and there are new obstacles there.

Level 3:
At the end, there is a part with a fast blade going between the ice areas. There should be more time to circle before this so it's less luck-based (right now, the space that could be used to circle is taken up by a blade. You can circle but it's ridiculously hard with even the slightest delay)

Level 4:
There should be room to circle before the thrower shadow.

The final blade timing needs to be a bit more forgiving.

Level 5:
Here, you have to remember Soft Ice is totally new to everyone. Throwing the player into a very difficult soft stage like this on the first soft ice level will discourage many people. I would say make level 5 an easy/medium soft maze, then just transfer the existing level 5 to level 6, etc.. so the user has a chance to practice an easier soft stage before having to pass the 2 Bunpers.

Level 6:
Remove one of the blades, and make the bladespin go faster (leave a hole). This would make an opening for the user to time, and make it harder to get random luck while rushing the blade wall.

Level 7:
Good level; no suggestion.

Level 8:
This is way too easy. How about, remove the ground tile in the middle of the lava path so you have to micro back and forth while waiting for your opportunity.

Level 9:
The blade is a great obstacle, but it's the only obstacle. Maybe make this a 2-part stage instead of a 1-part stage.

Specifically what I would suggest here is make the first part of the stage some short ice part using the wolves from level 11. Then, have this merge into the blade part (however, maybe slow the blades a bit if it's too hard)

Level 10:
No idea how to fix this :(

Level 11:
Make the wolf section a bit easier. The lava section seems fine.

Level 12:
Split into two levels, maybe (two with the Shadow). It's long enough.

I don't really know for the ones above this. There's one poison level with throwers that could be a lot harder (i beat it in just a couple tries, and it was like level 18), but that's all.

General stuff:
- Character should heal between levels
- Maybe make a way of restarting from level 1 so you don't have to remake every time you want to.
 
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EdgeOfChaos

E

EdgeOfChaos

The impossible was done today: pro_skater/awesomesk1ll beat soft escape. I never even thought it possible, but he did it with only 124 deaths at the end, and boasting runs like flawless level 21, and only 8 deaths on the final level.

You can watch the VOD here: http://www.twitch.tv/awesomesk1ll/b/649497594 , but I'm not sure how long it will be up.
7:23:00 to 8:08:30
Or if you prefer it in parts:
Part 1: http://store122.media87.justin.tv/archives/2015-4-13/live_user_awesomesk1ll_1428954860.flv
Part 2: http://store123.media87.justin.tv/archives/2015-4-13/live_user_awesomesk1ll_1428956573.flv
Part 3: http://store116.media81.justin.tv/archives/2015-4-13/live_user_awesomesk1ll_1428958293.flv

Also, any news on this game? It's been around a year, I think.

Tell you what. If someone ever officially beats Soft Escape 1.25 (with replays to prove it), I'll release a new version with new content.

Woo!
 

EdgeOfChaos

E

EdgeOfChaos

Also if you watch his level 19 run, the square bumper seems to have strange edges. A few times, he very clearly avoids it (but closely), and it still thinks he hit the corner. And he got pushed inside a bumper one time, which I don't think is supposed to happen.

One more thing, why do some levels (like 14) have part of the level in fog-of-war? Another one is level 7 (the ending). It's just a bit annoying because the hero's sight range is so small.

(edit)
Also if anyone is interested in watching SE games, awesomesk1ll sometimes streams SE on his stream, twitch.tv/awesomesk1ll , and while I can't claim to be even near as good as him, I sometimes stream this game too on twitch.tv/voyagesdelame
 
Level 2
Joined
Jan 30, 2014
Messages
14
it is nice that someone interests maps like soft escape.
EdgeOfChos, you was able to make time link at ur url:
Soft Escape Run
That run was done by pro_skater (twitch.tv/pro_skater11) aka lv.fox, my friend/co-clan, at place where we playing there are other players who passed this map. Anybody can join us at iccup server for play. Guide (how to do it) posted here: http://escapers.tk/go

Anyway, map update is good idea:) Softmints, Good luck.
 
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EdgeOfChaos

E

EdgeOfChaos

Since you're making a new version, I have some more feedback too. Several of the levels are more about knowing what to do than technical skill, and I believe you wanted to avoid this.

Level 10: The slope ice is very unintuitive. Players won't really know what's coming at all here, and you can master this part and clear it probably 90% of the time just by watching someone else do it once and copying the move they do (that is, position in the corner and click).

Level 13: In the second and third segments, it's not clear at all where you should go and where the gaps in the blade movements are. But once you see them, the level is actually extremely easy - the hardest maneuver is microing in the corner of the Hot Coals, which was also in 11 (and even harder there)

Level 15: The ridges in the first soft ice look strange - I didn't even understand what this part would do. And the solution of where to start and where to turn is very unintuitive, but doesn't look hard to do now that I know it. The same applies to the soft ice crater - figuring out what to do is a challenge.

Level 16: There is no indication that you can jump off a higher track onto a lower track. It's quite a clever idea, but I just always thought wandering off the tracks would kill me. Floating text would help here.

Level 17: The blades move in such a strange pattern it's difficult to figure out what to do.

Level 21: This is the most egregious offender; The solution to the blade-storm thing is incredibly easy technical-skill wise (literally running from 1 spot to another and out), but so chaotic you probably won't see the two spaces. I had tried the bladestorm 100-200 times before, and after watching the solution once, it took me about 4 deaths to get through.
 
Level 2
Joined
Jan 17, 2014
Messages
10
Since i have mastered all levels of soft escape i decided to do a speedrun. My best attempt so far: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=skYw0i51QUw

Also wanted to mention that in level 12 there's ingame delay (caused by shadow), not sure if it's bug or part of difficulty but that makes level really unenjoyable :( In single player games there's normally less delay, but when i play public games with friends that level is sometimes just unplayable... Could be because of number of shadows.
 
Level 14
Joined
Jun 3, 2005
Messages
209
speedfox, thanks for the feedback! The delay you report on level 12 is not intended; I will do my best to look into it and find a solution.

Congrats on your 17:53 run, I never would have expected anyone to finish it in under an hour back when I was making it!

EdgeOfChaos, also congrats! You've joined a very exclusive club :crazz:
 
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Level 8
Joined
May 30, 2015
Messages
207
I really like your escape map. It is quiet challenging for players to play it. I like your escape system which makes players to need to take the current challenge they entered over the time and to find an effective and flexible way to escape that current escape zone.
- - - - - - -
It is repetitive for players to try to escape but the repetition of dying leads players to think smart and escape in an efficient way which solves the current escape issue. This map also brings discussions to players in how to escape. It is a good situation as discussions related to problem solving are raised! (so that players will succeed with the aid of players rather than professional players who are selfish are not going to tell other players during the competition of escaping mortal paths.)
- - - - - - -
So nice! Your escape zones' challenges are quiet meaningful to players! This map have made me to play it a several times with other players, the map even make players and me to laugh hard.
- - - - - - -
There is a code system which prevents the punishment of repeating the same process (that is to begin to escape from the starting point)
- - - - - - -
It is good and fun!
 
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Level 25
Joined
Aug 18, 2009
Messages
4,081
It is repetitive for players to try to escape but the repetition of dying leads players to think smart and escape in an efficient way which solves the current escape issue.

Um? Most often it's try and error and hairsplitting precision. Also having failed many times does not necessarily introduce new ideas to the player how one could solve it. In Soft Escape there is not much room for choice. So you think and concentrate out of sheer difficulty. Sure you can say player A does it wrongly but in most places you have to meet certain movement windows in order to win.

This map also brings discussions to players in how to escape. It is a good situation as discussions related to problem solving are raised! (so that players will succeed with the aid of players rather than professional players who are selfish are not going to tell other players during the competition of escaping mortal paths.)

How do experienced players benefit from those who lag behind? Since the players are separated, I have noticed quite the contrary, that people who fail to advance get frustrated easily, even if you help them verbally. Moreover, even if they succeed eventually, the next challenge will present itself more troublesome.

There is a code system which prevents the punishment of repeating the same process (that is to begin to escape from the starting point)

In which case you have to repeat everything.
 
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