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          Tuesday, February 29, 2000

'Unforgiven' and 'The Immoral Immortal' Reviewed
- 11:34:55 AM - Dan
I have two brief reviews for both The Immoral Immortal and Unforgiving. Both reviews were done by Kyote. Here's the bottom line for each:

Unforgiven:

Pros: Some slightly interesting architecture, mission author does his own voices in the mission, which adds to the atmosphere.
Cons: Largely boring atmosphere, aggravating maze-like city streets area, boring objectives, poor design.
Bottom Line: A poor mission, not worth your time or effort. The author shows promise but needs to work longer on his next project before releasing it.
Score: 1.5 bronze hammers.
The Immoral Immortal:
Pros: Interesting plot elements and scrolls, somewhat unique premise, low framerate and poly count makes for very smooth play.
Cons: Ugly as sin, drab and uninteresting level, pitch-black guards
Bottom Line: An interesting change, at the very least, it isn't set in a castle, however, it's not a very well designed mission
2 bronze hammers.






          Sunday, February 27, 2000

A Pair of Demo Missions from Nick England
- 11:53:10 PM - Dan
Nick England has a pair of demo missions for me to display tonight. One of them, Spells, (I named it that because he didn't give it a name) demonstrates some hand-held hand-thrown grenades with various elemental effects. The other is a demo mission that play out like a small fan mission, but since it is so small and its main purpose is to demonstrate things, we're calling it a demo mission. It's called Nick, and is described as thus:
It has come to my attention that a certain Lord Bouroughs has managed to get hold of a collection of smelters from the hammers. He is using these to manufacture certain, illegal items including money. I have tracked down a small area in Lord Bourough's estates which houses a smelter making some lockpicks. I'll slip in and make some for a thieves discount. I have a contact who can give me the location of the main mint, but he has high demands. He used to be a guard there and knows that a guard there called Marcus knows some information on a valuable item, he wants that item, as well as a rare junipry plant which is rumoured to be in garden there. Also he wants the hand of glory which is in a guard hut in the compound. He has also told me of a bracelet which a guard has with incredible powers and an old rusted mechinary room with a magical artifact, these are mine to keep, if I can find them.
Now, if you will excuse me, I am going to bed.




Score of 'Lord Binclair' Changed to 3 Silver Hammers
- 11:24:48 PM - Dan
The reviewer of Lord Binclair had taken into the account the opinions of his peers, and has thus graciously changed his score of the mission to 3 silver hammers, a much more fitting score. Thank you, Ken, and thank you von.Eins for a great mission!




'Circle of Strain 3' - Updated to Final Version
- 7:24:02 PM - Dan
Good new CoS lovers! CoS3 is now in it's third and final release. Here's the details:
Here it is! The most final (and really final this time) CoS3 version. It has multilanguage support for French by Dha_Thief and german by Von.Eins + few tiny bug fixes.
Thanks for your continual support of your product, Mokkis. Download it!




'The Vigil' Updated
- 4:03:24 PM - Dan
No sooner has the review been sent in, but Banshee has an update for Vigil. This update fixes some bugs. Download it or check the readme.



'The Vigil' Reviewed - 4.5 Silvers
- 1:36:33 PM - Dan
It is rather unfair to have a fan mission released just a week ago to be reviewed before a fan mission released two months ago. Unfortunately with the review scene open to all, I have to take them as they come. Please, taffers, review some of the older un-reviewed missions on the list on the left column.

Today we have a review of The Vigil, the sequel to the highly acclaimed Lord Edmund Entertains. It looks like Banshee has done it again.

•  Pros: great gameplay, great lightning (!), extremely well planned, excellent AI.
•  Cons: As kfgecko mentioned in his review of Lord Edmund: There are no mentionable flaws in both of Banshee's missions.
•  Bottom Line: Banshee has produced another winner. The Vigil is a very clean, well written, well designed level Mission If you have not played "Lord Edmund" then you should play it first before participating in "The Vigil" so that you may experience the full potential of both missions.
The reviewer, Dkessler, gave the mission a very prestigious 4.5 silver hammers. Congratulations, Banshee, on another hit! Read the review!




A Thief Music Video?
- 12:12:54 PM - Dan
Hey Taffers, check this out:
Seems a student here at Penn, being the fan of Thief: TDP, that he is, took it upon himself to put together an unusual fan project for his film class -- a music video set to its intro music, sort of a parody of the intro trailer. It is, perhaps, amusing; certainly we thought you might want to see it.

Presently it's available at http://www.stwing.org/~ruskine/falen

in Quicktime format -- we're working on getting it exported into something a bit less obnoxious.

Enjoy, yes?

I took a look at it. Yes, it is generally amusing. :)





          Thursday, February 24, 2000

Thief II Status Update at Adrenaline Vault
- 5:29:14 PM - James
Shane McAllen slipped another note to us, pointing out that Adrenaline Vault had "Thief II Goodness" in a update on Thief II. The update has a few screenshots and a brief note about how things are going - which is, thankfully, pretty well.





          Tuesday, February 22, 2000

'The Mages Area' Reviewed - 2.5 Silver
- 11:30:46 PM - Dan
Shrubbery, also known as 'Myoldnamebroke' (presumably because his old name broke) has sent in a review of the highly controversial fan mission The Mages Area. The review is of the original version, not the "easier" version. Here's the quickie:
•  Pros: Great sneaky play, brilliant technical accomplishments
•  Cons: Had to reload far too often, can be very, very irritating
•  Bottom Line: If you can put up with the problems and stick with it, this level provides some of the best gameplay I’ve encountered in a FM.
All in all, Shurbbery awared the mission 2.5 silver hammers. Sounds fair to me! Congrats on a great mission, Mad God!




Gamecenter Previews Thief II
- 10:08:02 PM - James
GameCenter has put up a Preview of Thief II. Be warned that it says things about the plot that I, for one, hadn't heard before. 8( On the good side, it's a very positive preview! 8)
Also, I am reliably informed that the March issue of the British mag PC Zone splashed Thief II all over the cover and included a drooling 6-page preview.




New Fan Missions: Talisman Of The Keepers - Gerome - The Vigil
- 4:25:53 PM - Dan
It never fails... the fan missions always seem to come out in clumps. Today I have three fan missions to release, one of which I know many of us have been egarly waiting for. I'll save that one for last.

First of all is Talisman of the Keepers, the first release from Kozmala. TotK does something very interesting, in the way of giving each guard a different face. Good idea!


Talisman Of The Keepers
  readme.txt
  (2.4 Meg)
  Released: 2-22-2K

  No Walkthrough
By Kozmala:
We have been keeping an eye on the Hammers these last few months. Keeper Lukas infiltrated their order and has been passing information to us regarding their activities. It seems during extending their underground tombs they discovered an ancient temple. The markings of this temple are familiar to us. Their people stole a Talisman from us a long time ago. We thought it lost until now. (more)

The next is a mission called Gerome, from the also first-time mission author Caleb Callaway, better known as Despot. This mission was made using Thief Gold, and has not yet been patched. A note to all Thief Gold authors: The purpose of the TG fan missions patch is so that you can make your mission compatible with Thief, not so that everyone else can make their Thief compatible with your mission! Gerome has not yet been patched, so until the author can update it, non TG players will have some invisible enemies.


Gerome
  readme.txt
  (1.4 Meg)
  Released: 2-22-2K
  Thief Gold-Made

  No Walkthrough
By Caleb Callaway (Despot):
There is a rich man that lives in the country side near the City who has earned a reputation for being hard, but honest. A classic rags-to-riches story, in fact. He has stayed clear of all political struggles and "shady" deals. He is know as Gerome of The Woodlands, after his home which he has styled "The Woodlands". No one to your knowledge has ever had anything against him. Until now. You have been contacted by a man named Sychter who said he was willing to pay well for incriminating evidence against this man. You have no idea what Sychter will achieve by this, however, he has paid you half the agreed price already, and you wouldn't want to be on his bad side. He seems to be more influential then he is saying.

And finally, the one we've been waiting for. Banshee has released the sequel to Lord Edmund Entertains!, which, at the time it was reviewed, got the highest score we had ever given (and kept the honor for over a month!). Here it is, folks: Vigil


The Vigil
  readme.txt
  (2.2 Meg)
  Released: 2-22-2K

  No Walkthrough
By Banshee:
A sequel to 'Lord Edmund Entertains!', this mission takes Garrett gatecrashing into Duke Creygan's funeral. It is recommended you play LEE! first, or you won't understand too much of the plot.






Walkthrough: Dockland
- 2:57:49 PM - Dan
Steve Hindley has sent in a normal-level walkthrough for his new mission Dockland. The walkthrough can be reached here.




'Mystery' - The Demo Mission from The_Thief
- 12:42:57 PM - Dan
The_Thief has created a truly brilliant little demo, which gives the player the ability to actually control two characters, one at a time. There is an item in your inventory that, when used, switches you from one body to the other. It's sweet - check it out! Now we need for him to make the tutorial... :)




Lord Binclair Deserves A Second Chance
- 12:35:58 PM - Dan
This is rather unorthodox, but I think it needs to be said. If I am going to be accepting fan mission reviews from the general populace, I cannot discriminate against opinions, no matter how much I disagree with them. The review of Lord Binclair goes strongly against the opinions of the general public, as well as myself. I think that von.Eins has created a wonderful mission. However the person who did the review and sent it in sees things differently. I wish no disrespect to a person who took the time to write a well written review by tossing it aside just because I disagree with it.

So I say again... please someone send in a review of Lord Binclair that reflects the majority opinion of this mission, so that it may take its place in the ranks of TEG's great missions.




Sleeping Servants Tutorial
- 11:54:09 AM - Dan
Thief_Pawn has written a short tutorial on creating sleeping servants. Check it out. The tutorial includes a downloadable custom gamesys. Thanks, TP!




Dockland Updated
- 11:36:48 AM - Dan
Dockland, the newly released fan mission by Steve Hindley, has been updated. Version 1.1 is now available for download. This version fixes some major bugs.





          Monday, February 21, 2000

dark_lord, a Fan Mission by dark_lord
- 12:41:56 PM - Dan
This is a small map, designed to be a sort of Hammerite base. All of the Hammerites are non-hostile, so you can explore freely and watch them do their thing. check it out, or view the readme.




Review Free-for-All!
- 12:05:24 PM - Dan
I'm sure that everyone has noticed that the pile of unreviewed missions has grown and grown. Well, I guess the idea of having a steady review staff hasn't worked as well as I had hoped. I'll try something new. The field for reviews is open to all! If you want to review a mission, then email it in with screeenshots. If it's well written and follows the format, then I'll post it up.

Each mission can have up to two reviews, but I'd rather not double up on reviews until they are all taken care of - so please review one that needs a review! Also, try to review the older missions first, and don't pick which mission to review based on which is your favorite. I don't want to see ten reviews of Circle of Strain 3 and no reviews of Mr Bubblebee's Gallery of Drunken Guards. (Hey, that sounds interesting... Trimfect? :)

So yeah, people... lets try and get all these missions reviewed, please? :)




Review of Lord Binclair - 3 Silver Hammers (Updated)
- 11:44:32 AM - Dan
Ken Ramsley, a guest reviewer, has reviewed the fan mission Lord Binclair by Rolf Pulverich (von.Eins). Here is the sum of it.
•  Pros: Relatively bug free, realistic setting, lots of places to go.
•  Cons: Too long, lackluster story, shopping-list feeling. Too many over-pumped guards often protecting nothing worth fighting for.
•  Bottom Line: Lots of real estate, some interesting custom items and effects, but nothing much to establish or carry a story.
All in all, he awarded the mission 3 silver hammers. Congrats, von.Eins, on a great mission! Lord Binclair is a "Bafford Style" mission. It was released on the fourth of this month.





          Thursday, February 17, 2000

Official Announcement - Master Nightfall's Fan Mission: 'Carroll'
- 6:54:37 PM - Dan
Greetings, Taffers and Dromedties! I'm happy to finally officially announce a fan mission of my own creation - "Carroll". It's something I know that none of you were expecting.

Please go check it out at this little website I threw together. http://www.thief-darkproject.com/special/carroll/

I hope to get some feedback soon... please post any comments and questions here. I'd be happy to release some new screens as they are ready if everyone is interested!





          Wednesday, February 16, 2000

Polls at Thief-Darkproject.com
- 11:56:54 PM - Saam
As you can see, the polls are now also available on Thief-Darkproject.com, to the right-hand side of the page. I think you'll like our current poll, courtesy of Dan (he's one original guy, what can I say!).

Vote now!




Theif Gold Review at GameCenter
- 7:59:22 AM - James
GameCenter has posted up a review of Thief Gold by Tom Chick. the review is both full of praise and lukewarm, praising the basic Thief concept and gameplay but arguing the Gold game isn't worth it for those who already own Thief.





          Sunday, February 13, 2000

'Dockland' - A New Fan Missions by Steven Hindley
- 8:49:35 PM - Dan
Tonight I have the release of Dockland, the sequal to Garrett's Revenge, by Steven Hindley.

Dockland
  readme.txt
  (3.8 Meg)
  Re-released: 2-13-2K

  No Walkthrough
By Steven Hindley:
Later on the same night as the setting for "Garrett's Revenge" earlier in the night you robbed the vault of the Hammerite bank. After which you returned to your room at the inn, you can hear the Hammerites searching for who is responsible for the robbery, it only takes one Hammer to check the registry in the local inn to see if there is anyone new in this part of town. In the bar below your room you were met by another keeper, who had some items you might find useful, for a price. You go to your room together to sort out a deal, you hear from him that the gate to the docks is open, the Hammer's opened it to escort some drunk guards somewhere. The game starts where you are dealing with the keeper.

Thank you for your submittion, Steve! I hope everyone enjoys your mission.




Polls on TTLG
- 7:58:39 PM - Saam
We are experimenting with a poll system, over at TTLG. If you could please go and participate to see how everything goes (hopefully smoothly), we'd appreciate it.

Now go and vote!




Thief 1 Demos Located
- 5:52:49 PM - Dan
Thank you, Robbie Patterson and Yannick Valot, for directing me to GameSpot where both Thief 1 demos are still located. The Demos page has been updated to reflect the find.




Stowaway & Hunt of Montrose Updated
- 5:17:52 PM - Dan
I just finished uploading an updated version of Apache's duel mission pack, Stowaway & Hunt of Montrose. The update includes mainly some bug fixes. Also, on the campaign page, is has been declared that Ramriez's Revenge is indeed part one of this soon-to-be four part series. Thanks, Apache!




Portable Light Source Demo
- 4:32:30 PM - Dan
Mad God has sent in a demo, showing how to give the player a portable light source. His demo isn't perfect, but it's useable! Check it out!




Dromed News: Models, Knives and Preview.
- 6:58:14 AM - Totality
Catalyst has constructed a zip which contains a collection of unused thief models. If you need some amusement or some novelty item for your level then check them out. Here's the relevant thread

The_Thief has also been working away, though not to a level sadly. He has come up with a custom knife thrower whose daggers actually spin!

You also may want to check out the forthcoming level Calendra's Cistern which looks very promising.





          Saturday, February 12, 2000

SMTP Problem Resolved
- 1:07:23 PM - Saam
I have found a workaround for our little problem we've been having with the forum. Thanks!





          Friday, February 11, 2000

An Article on Level Design
- 10:10:01 PM - Dan
All of you Dromed folks should enjoy this. It's an interview with Richard "Zdim" Carlson, LGS map designer for Thief (I'm not sure if it's Thief 1 or 2, but it probably says it in the article). He has lots of good insight. It's a great read! Thanks for pointing this out, Zerker!




Vacation's Over Folks - I'm Back!
- 8:16:49 PM - Dan
Greetings folks! My little vacation is now over, so here I am once again. Thanks goes to Trimfect and James for taking care of some things while I was go. I appreciate it, you guys. :)

Just now I dealt with the little problem that the Thief demos are no longer hosted at CDROM.com. I switched the Thief 2 & Assassin's demo over to 3DFiles.com, but I cannot for the life of me find the Bafford's Demo. If you know where that one can still be downloaded, then please email me as soon as possible.

While I was gone, the main thing I did was work with Dromed. In case you haven't heard it mentioned on the forums already, I'm the creative director of a team working on a very special Thief campaign, which we shall hopefully be unveiling in a very big way sometime soon. Last week I was finally able to get a great deal done on my mission, which I am very pleased with so far.

Welp, back to work!





          Wednesday, February 09, 2000

Thief II Movie at GameCenter
- 11:42:20 PM - James
GameCenter has up what they claim to be an exclusive Thief II gameplay movie. You can download it from this page. I don't know if it is actually new; it autoloads as a Quicktime movie, which never works right for me. 8( You can try to get around that with this link.




CDMag reviews Thief II
- 8:27:45 AM - James
CDMag has up a Preview of Thief 2. There are possible spoilers... you are warned. And the preview claims that location-based damage is implemented: no more is it "possible to knock a guard out by blackjacking him in the butt".





          Monday, February 07, 2000

Something to tide you over?
- 4:59:44 PM - James
The Adrenaline Vault has up a preview of Hitman. The first thing that caught my eye about this review was the numerous nice things it has to say about Thief. Taffers may want to give it a read; Hitman may prove to have somewhat similar gameplay to our beloved Thief. We'll see.





          Friday, February 04, 2000

Thief 2 Faq Reveals that Dromed will be Included
- 8:46:38 PM - Totality
Good news for all you dromeder's getting worried that thief 2 won't feature the beloved editor..the faq on the official official thief 2 page has confirmed that a new revision of dromed will be included! :) The faq contains many other interesting tidbits, and is well worth your checking out.




Happy Birthday, Thief-Darkproject.com!
- 2:47:28 AM - Dan
It came and went without me even realizing it! Better late then never, eh? February 2nd marked this website's 1 year birthday. One year and two days ago, I uploaded the first barely functional index document to this URL, and the Circle of Stone and Shadow was born.

What a year it has been, eh? Here are some stats that may interest you.

  • T-dp.com takes up 339 Megs (that doesn't include the mp3s).
  • Since the moment we opened, we have gotten 316,426 hits. This site gets, on average, 906 hits a day. Of those, 75% is from the US, 3% of you are from the UK, 3% from Canada, and Germany Austria, Finland, and Sweden each contributed 1%.
  • 72% of my guests use some form of Internet Explorer, and 25% use Netscape. Only 3% of you use 640x480, and 6% use 1280x1024. Everyone else is somewhere in between, with a minuscule amount of 1600x1200 users.
  • The busiest times of the site is from 10pm EST to 1am EST. The busiest day of the week is, oddly enough, Tuesday.
  • This site takes up more megs, and gets more hits, then the rest of TTLG combined (except the forums!).

Pretty spiffy, eh?

To celebrate the site's birthday, I'm taking a one week vacation. One week without so much as thinking about doing any work related to the Internet. I think I've earned it, no? I've never done this before - wonder if I can survive. I'll be back next Friday! C-ya latter, taffers.




Two (Three!) New Fan Missions From Apache and von.Eins
- 2:28:27 AM - Dan
It looks like we are entering into another time of plenty for fan missions. Tonight I have two new ones to release. The first mission is called Lord Binclair, and is the end result of half a year's work. Here it is:

Lord Binclair
  readme.txt
  (4.7 Meg)
  Released: 2-04-2K

  No Walkthrough
By Rolf Pulverich (von.Eins):
A Bafford style mission. Has books, extra objectives for harder difficulty levels and so on.

The second mission, or rather missions, is the double mission pack from NativeArt Design, a.k.a. Apache and crew. This double mission pack weighs in at just under 15 megs, making it the most heafty fan mission download to date. Blame the cutscenes. Here she is:

Stowaway
   -&-
Hunt of Montrose

  readme.txt
  (15.4 Meg)
  Released: 2-04-2K

  No Walkthrough
By Apache (NativeArt Design):
This is a double mission pack. Stowaway is a short mission taking place on a dock. You must stowaway on the ship to get to the Island of the Builder. But, before you go stop by the local Hammerite Temple. They have a Sword that will come in quite handy. Then on with the main mission. The Hunt for Montrose takes place on the Island of the Builder. Montrose's trail lead here. Search through the town and the levels of the tower and find him.


And there you have it. Enjoy!





          Tuesday, February 01, 2000

GameSpot Previews Thief II
- 12:26:23 AM - James
GameSpot has put up its Preview of Thief II. Despite an initial slam of Thief's graphics, the rest of the review is quite positive about Thief - "Thief's concept was new and was a refreshing one in the stagnant first-person shooter genre". There are some bits of the preview that may be spoilers, though - you are warned!!






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