My Take On The Earthbound Beta

Gotta say, I’m not impressed by a lot of the changes made to the Earthbound levels in the beta. A lot of it seems, from a gameplay perspective, to be unnecessary handholding in terms of cutting out exploration and figuring out what to do in more nonlinear or expansive areas, and cutting off opportunities for backtracking for reasons I am… honestly unable to divine. I didn’t think that the exploration and figuring-out-what-to-do was ever a negative , but I’m not really opposed to it being cut out either. …

What I do have a problem with is the fact that so many of the changes made just look… klunky and amateurish in their execution, and hurt the game in other ways. Sometimes, it’s as simple as this pipe not going all the way into the wall…

Sometimes it’s areas that just don’t look that good, like this very bare maintenance tunnel that doesn’t match the aesthetic of the rest of the map

or these really kind of cheap signs under the indicator lights or these low-quality textures used on the viewing-bunker doors, which really probably should be models (the interior of the bunkers themselves are also kind of empty; I’d add doors leading back into the main control area) Sometimes it’s logic issues- for instance, there’s no way for a person to actually get to the catwalk here Or into this entire area, since the sole door that connected it to the rest of the complex originally has now been taken out (curiously, actually, since the others were just locked): So, overall, I am really not impressed and do not think this update is up to Crowbar’s usually excellent standards.

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I agree with all points. All these one-way tickets in game don’t feel realistic or natural and kinda breaks game immersion. It is always the same, just in different coats, things like:
broken one-way elevators, fallen debris, broken doors, broken ladders, etc.
And game guidance is also different thing. For example in interloper I really liked first release of Gargathon map. The lighting theme was great. But now it is lit like christmass tree with blue lights which doesn’t blend well with rest of red-orange ambience, it just hurts eyes. The guidance should be subtle and not to peak through the level art.
Maybe I am the only one, but one of the best memorable moments of BM was in OaRU when I first time entered the large open area of train depot.

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