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Heart of the OHR Contest 2014

 
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Pepsi Ranger
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Joined: 05 Feb 2003
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 01, 2014 12:06 pm    Post subject: Heart of the OHR Contest 2014 Reply with quote

Heart of the OHR Contest

2014 Edition

And so it begins...

For those who were looking forward to this moment, the wait is over. For those who have no idea what this is about, read on.

And, for those who do know what this is about, read on anyway, for there are a few minor changes to take note.

A Brief History as Written in 2010:

HotOHR 2010 Thread wrote:
It seems that as times change, interests start moving in new directions, and the things that first captured our hearts and attention about indie-RPG design had since faded into obscurity.

Toward the end of the ‘90s and the early part of this decade [2000s], RPGs were king, and were incidentally, the only thing the OHR was capable of making. And then, as the decade continued, RPGs became less common, less desired, and soon the rate of releases made on the engine went from a sprint to a crawl.

Then, in about 2006 or 2007, the limits of the OHR began to change, and new life formed. Sidescrollers were now not only possible, but easier to make. Puzzle games, menu-based games, and even street fighting games were beginning to surface in droves throughout the course of three years. And during this time the course of the OHR RPG began to fall. RPGs were released on occasion, but the presence of one became rare, and almost surprising. And even then, the likelihood of it being a joke game was high. No, the integrity of the epic vacation gave way to a cheap day-trip, and by 2009 the nature of the RPG had become nearly absent.

[In June 2010], Surlaw and I were discussing the disappointment of creating huge games, which translates to many, many hours of development time (read: three years or more for some games), that people refuse to play because it requires them to fight random battles (that aren’t titillating 100% of the time), or read text (of any length), or spend more than a few hours of game time in order to finish it. Authors who put the level of time and attention that goes into a quality game, just to have it go unplayed because of an unwillingness to read (for example), are highly disheartened, and certain OHR gems have gone unfinished because the author experiences What’s-the-Point? Syndrome.

This, of course, has contributed to the huge decline of RPGs—and especially in the quality RPGs—in our opinion, and that should be shocking when one considers we’re a community focused on an RPG making engine.

Even James Paige once expressed a slight disappointment in the gradual reduction of games that actually use the default features to, you know, make an RPG.

That is what the OHRRPGCE was made for.

Now, this isn’t to knock the surge in alternative gaming styles. I loved Slimes. The games released for the 2009 8-Bit Contest were brilliant. But look at how many good RPGs came out in 2009. Okedoke, and, um….

It’s hard to say whether the modern RPG is dying or just in a slump, but we’d like to see this giant of yesteryear make at least one more stand in the community. So, I am proposing the “Heart of the OHR Contest,” which is a contest, quite simply, about making the best RPGs we can make with the engine that brought us here in the first place.


Rules:

-Must be an RPG. This is a zero rule. What categorizes as an RPG can be left open for debate, but at the end of the day it must be an RPG. In 2010, we saw one game stretch the limit of what we considered acceptable (Do You Want to Be a Hero?), and I would argue Silhouette from 2012 pushed the boundaries, as well. For a complete list of the games that made the cut in 2010 and 2012, consult the following link:

http://rpg.hamsterrepublic.com/ohrrpgce/Heart_of_the_OHR

-NonRPGs not permitted. (See Above)

-Joke games not permitted (though funny ones are okay).

-Special scripting is okay (as long as it doesn't turn the RPG into a nonRPG).

-Game must have at least 30 minutes of playtime with a good chunk of that devoted to story (in other words, 30 minutes without level grinding).

-Updates to previous RPGs permitted.

-Updates to previous RPGs need at least 30 minutes of new content to be eligible. Changing a textbox to an old two-hour game and re-releasing it doesn’t make it eligible.

New Rule for 2014: If you are posting a rereleased game for the contest, you must provide either a readme (or some document) discussing where the new content starts (if it's a continuation) or what the new content is (if it's integrated into earlier previously released sections), or you must supply a save file that begins the game just before the new content kicks in. If you fail to do this, your game will not be entered into the contest.

Note: I prefer the former since it's clearer what's new and discourages players from beginning your game halfway into the story.

-Fan games and parodies discouraged, but not forbidden. Original stories preferred.

RPG Release Categories:

Note: This category has been updated for 2014.

In 2010 every entry was lumped into the same category and judged under the same conditions regardless of originality versus the rereleased. In 2012 they were divided into three categories: Original, Rereleased, and OHR Legends. This year, due to popular demand, I will be combining the Original and Rereleased categories together again, with one small change.

Original and Rereleased Games:

Original games are the games that have never been publicly released prior to June 1, 2014. These are the easiest to judge since the ground is fresh. We had eight original entries in 2010, including the Game of the Year winner, Motrya, and 13 in 2012.

Note: These games just need to come with a Coke and a smile.

Rereleased games have been unleashed on the community before June 1, 2014, and are making a second life appearance in the Heart of the OHR Contest. Any original game that was released for the 2010 or 2012 contest will automatically default to this category if reentered for 2014. In 2010 we had four rereleased games and in 2012, we had three.

Note: These games must include documents or save files that inform the player where the new content can be found.

OHR Legends:

This special category is reserved for the games that have been submitted as rereleases in previous Heart of the OHR contests and resubmitted this year as "honorary" contestants. There are six games eligible for Level 1 Legend status and one (Vikings of Midgard) eligible for Level 2 Legend status. These games will receive only one prize.

Note: Authors have freedom to choose how these games are released since they are separate from the prize pool, but they can still be inclusive with the general vote to see how they fare against new blood.

New Category for 2014:

Bonuses:

Entrants can now receive bonus points to their lowest scores for meeting these optional goals:

-Finished game (bonus: 5 points on top of lowest awarded score)

-Three or more towns to explore (bonus: 3 points on top of lowest awarded score)

-Two or more hours of gameplay (bonus: 2 points on top of lowest awarded score)

-Flavor text for objects (bonus: 1 point on top of lowest awarded score)

-Off-the-beaten path locales (bonus: 1 point per side area, up to three)

Any bonus that brings the lowest voter's score up to 10 will roll over to the next lowest voter's score.

Release Dates:

Unlike traditional contests, “Heart of the OHR” will not require a start time or an end time per se. Rather, this will adopt the “release window” technique made popular with Game-a-thon, in that any RPG released within the window is eligible (provided it meets the above standards).

Window begins June 1st and ends November 30th.

New to 2014: I will allow a two-week grace period for bug-fixing (Note: this grace period is not reserved for adding new content). Entries must be ready for voting by December 14th.

All deadlines will expire at 6am EST the following day.

Voting:

Note: This category has been updated for 2014.

Voting will run from December 16 - December 31 (I'll extend this to a few extra days in January if any holiday vacationers need the extra time.)

Note that I will not close voting until I have a minimum of 10 votes, so if the deadline comes and goes and I have fewer than that, voting will remain open until the minimum is met. I want all contestants to have a fair playthrough and comment/critique/score for their games.

The way we handle votes will change from the 2010 and 2012 contests. One day we will lock in on an effective system. I hope this could be the one.

For full details on how it used to be, consult the following post:

http://www.slimesalad.com/forum/viewtopic.php?p=71778#71778

The gist of this year's changes will include the adoption of the 5-point average, the peak vote target range, and the two-thirds vote system.

Five-point Average: Any game that falls short of the peak vote target range will receive however many fives it takes to reach the two-thirds margin.

Peak Vote Target Range: Identifies the game with the most number of votes and uses its vote count as the determinate for the contest average.

Two-thirds Vote System: Caps the required voting minimum at two-thirds the value of the peak target. Any game meeting this minimum cap will not receive additional fives to pad its average.

I will get more in-depth with this system in December.

Prizes:

Note: New Prizes for 2014.

Because RPGs are harder to come by these days (especially in contests), I thought it’s only fair to combat the odds with prizes that don’t suck. Therefore, various members of the community have agreed to give special bonuses to entrants and the winner.*

Just by entering a game into the contest, the contestant will get to choose a bugfix or feature request to be put on the December 1st bug bounty.

Here’s how it works:

During a time frame decided on by James, you may post your bugfix or feature request here so that he can start working toward implementing it. You may only choose one, so pick wisely. Once you choose your request, you are then expected to release a quality RPG (fitting the above standards) by November 30th to receive your entry prize. The prize, of course, is a ransom for the bug or feature request you posted here if it’s not implemented by December 1st. If your bug is not fixed by the deadline, then you get whatever James decides to pay for ransoms. And that’s just for entering the contest!

Note: James is in charge of how the bug bounty system works, including what to pay out for failure to implement, and when requests will no longer be accepted. For questions regarding this prize, please ask him for clarification.

Note 2: Unlike the last two contests, James will not be giving an extra bounty to the winner this year.

You may view the current requests here:

http://rpg.hamsterrepublic.com/ohrrpgce/User:Bob_the_Hamster/HeartBugs_2014

And the old archival requests here:

http://rpg.hamsterrepublic.com/ohrrpgce/User:Bob_the_Hamster/HeartBugs_2010

http://rpg.hamsterrepublic.com/ohrrpgce/User:Bob_the_Hamster/HeartBugs_2012

Additionally, anyone out there can add to the prize pot if he or she has something to offer, so feel free to help make this into a treasure trove of winnings if you want to, and if you have the resources for it.

Specifically I'd like to see:
-cash prizes
-fan art
-theme song about the winning game(s)

You may add to the prize pot discussion here:

http://www.slimesalad.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=6091

Potential community offered prizes include:

-Cafepress T-shirts or swag for winner (courtesy Spoonweaver...and maybe Fenrir-Lunaris?).

-Funding for the swag site (courtesy Mystic). Note: This one's ambiguous to me.

-Reviews for each contestant (courtesy Meatballsub)

-Cash prize of undetermined value (need confirmation) for winner (courtesy Meatballsub).

-Pizza delivery to winner or favored game (courtesy Willy Elektrix).

-Poster and icon for winning game (courtesy Ichiro).

-100 dogecoins..."fake Internet moneys" with dog memes (courtesy Bob the Hamster).

-Slimebucks of extremely low but increasing value to the top three winners (courtesy Meowskivich).

Note: This list will remain open to new prize additions from now until December 14th. I will update this list as I get new volunteers.

Special Prize for OHR Legends releases:

Any game categorized as an OHR Legends release will receive a special trophy classifying it as such. This is strictly a prestige award, but it will remind future players of the game's longevity. This trophy will receive "levels" each time it's awarded to a specific game. OHR Legends releases should still meet the 30 minutes of additional game time rule to be eligible for the trophy.

Note: In the event that an OHR Legend wins first place, then the second place winner (or first-place original or rereleased game) will receive the top prize(s).

So, as you can see, it would be crazy not to join and make something for the Heart of the OHR Contest, so take the chance. Nominating a bugfix or feature request confirms your intention to join. Just remember that there will be no ransom paid on unresolved bugs if you drop out. So make something and stick with it. Don’t procrastinate, either. Games that don’t meet the above standards will also forfeit the ransom.

*Because prizes are awarded by members of the community, and because community members come and go like the wind, all prizes are subject to change.

Tips:

Release the best game you’re capable of making. The community doesn’t want to see or play throwaway titles anymore. Do your best to make a quality game. While you shouldn’t be intimidated by this, you still need to be aware that games like Wandering Hamster and Motrya are just as capable of making an appearance during the contest window as any game, so make it your best if you want the winning prizes.

Have fun. Please use this thread to post your bugfix or feature requests for James and the developers, and use it to announce your RPG releases starting on June 1st. And I’d appreciate it if this thread were stickied until the end of the year. Thanks.

I will update this thread periodically as new information comes. Good luck, everyone.
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Currently Updating: General sweep of the game world and dialogue boxes. Adding extended maps.

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Pepsi Ranger
Reality TV Host




Joined: 05 Feb 2003
Posts: 491
Location: South Florida

PostPosted: Mon Dec 15, 2014 10:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Okay, I gave you guys an extra day due to a combination of being too busy and too tired to check earlier, but Heart of the OHR 2014 is now officially over. Yay.

So, what's next? Now we vote.

Voting is something the Heart of the OHR has had trouble with before, but I've come up with a system this year that could help normalize the process. If it goes well, we'll keep it for future use.

Your job is simple: Play at least 30 minutes of each game (though we prefer you play the whole game) and rate it between 1-10 based on how much you like it, with 1 meaning you hate it and 10 meaning it's the best you've played, ever. At the end of the contest, I'll compile each game's votes into an average score, and that will determine winners and everyone else.

You can certainly update your vote as you play. I won't actually tally the points until the voting period ends, so if you need to make changes based on additional play, you can. Just don't base your score on other people's opinions. You may love a game for the same reason someone else hates it, and that's fine. They may give it a 1 or a 2, but you should give it closer to 10. You don't have to please anyone with your vote.

You're both free and encouraged to talk about the entries in this thread. Why did you give it a 6 when everyone else is giving it a 10? Why did you give it a 10 when everyone else gave it a 6? Ultimately, we're not discussing results to affect other people's opinions of the game, but each author could learn something from any and all discussions about his or her game. So, discuss away.

Once the votes are in, I'll compile the list and post a fancy-ish results page somewhere. With HamsterSpeak gone and any official magazine nonexistent, I'll have to improvise. But we improvised in 2012; we can do it again this year.

To paraphrase key voting points from the top of this thread:

-I will not close voting until I have a minimum of 10 votes, so if the deadline comes and goes and I have fewer than that, voting will remain open until the minimum is met. I want all contestants to have a fair playthrough and comment/critique/score for their games.

-The gist of this year's changes will include the adoption of the 5-point average, the peak vote target range, and the two-thirds vote system.

Five-point Average: Any game that falls short of the peak vote target range will receive however many fives it takes to reach the two-thirds margin.

Peak Vote Target Range: Identifies the game with the most number of votes and uses its vote count as the determinate for the contest average.

Two-thirds Vote System: Caps the required voting minimum at two-thirds the value of the peak target. Any game meeting this minimum cap will not receive additional fives to pad its average.

Basically, this means that whichever game receives the most number of votes will become the bar every other game must match. Obviously, being the game with the most votes means that the others won't match. The 5-point system combined with the two-thirds system will allow it to match.

So, if 16 people vote on Fantasy Lands, 15 vote on Troubled Waters, 11 vote on Cats in the Cradle, and 9 vote on Punch Me in the Face, Fantasy Lands becomes the bar that the others must match.

If 16 votes sets the peak range, then a game needs at least 11 votes to make the 2/3 cap requirement. This means that Troubled Waters and Cats in the Cradle can suffice on the votes they receive.

But, with only 9 votes to its name, Punch Me in the Face falls short of the cap, so we'll adopt the 5-point system to help it out. This means that votes 10 and 11 will receive fives. This prevents it from stealing a top spot due to fewer scores affecting the average, which has happened in the past.

So, that's voting.

The list below is the official list of entries for Heart of the OHR 2014.

Confirmed Entries:

-These are the games that the author posted during the window with the intention of entering the contest. These are the ones that should definitely get your vote.

Note: I'm including Stand on this list because 1.) the author expressed an interest in submitting it for the contest, and because, 2.) even though it's a bit short and leans off the line that defines Heart of the OHR, it is an RPG, which the OHR is designed for, and it does conclude its first plot point, as incomplete as it may feel, and ultimately I think it captures the spirit of what we authors do: exploring the OHR's wide range of abilities for creating the most interesting RPG experience we can for a particular title. That said, it does thread the line on what's acceptable for this contest, so if you don't feel like it should receive a vote, you don't have to give it one. But you should anyway because it's worth checking out.

Troll Over by Spoonweaver
Description: Original game that needs no record of progress
Download: http://www.slimesalad.com/forum/viewgame.php?t=6196

Batman & Robin by RedMaverickZero
Description: Rereleased game that should come with documentation or information or save file denoting the added content from the previous version
Download: http://www.slimesalad.com/forum/viewgame.php?t=3719

Okédoké! La Leyenda Mexicana by FnrrfYgmSchnish
Description: OHR Legend (Level 1) and newly completed game
Download: http://www.slimesalad.com/forum/viewgame.php?t=2716

Mr. Triangle's Adventure by RedMaverickZero
Description: An original epic-length release
Download: http://www.slimesalad.com/forum/viewgame.php?t=6376

Zero: Secret Pasts Collide by Buni M
Description: Not sure if it's original or rereleased--I'm sure I've heard this title many years ago--but it seems new enough to count as an original
Download: http://www.slimesalad.com/forum/viewgame.php?t=6384

Winged Realm by Pheonix
Description: Looks like an original
Download: http://www.slimesalad.com/forum/viewgame.php?t=6377

Stand by kylekrack
Description: Original, short, and unconventional, but still an RPG
Download: http://www.slimesalad.com/forum/viewgame.php?t=6268

Invasion of the Mantle Dwellers by RabMoghal
Description: Original release, late entry
Download: http://www.slimesalad.com/forum/viewgame.php?t=6397

Unconfirmed Entries:

-These are the games that were submitted during the window, though the authors have not confirmed intention to enter. I'm including them because they are worthy of the contest anyway. You should vote on them, but you should make the confirmed entries your priority if you're short on time.

Note: I'm including T4R4D1DDL3 based on a convincing argument TMC had made about its design, and how it captures the true heart of the OHR. It's not, in my opinion, an RPG, but it does tell a complete story, and it does capture the truest heart of the OHR by mimicking the games from the early community circa 1998-2002 or so, so I decided to bend in favor of including it.

The Pumpkin Warriors by Froginator
Description: Original release, unconfirmed entry
Download: http://www.slimesalad.com/forum/viewgame.php?t=6306

T4R4D1DDL3 by superawesomeric
Description: Original release, unconfirmed entry
Download: http://www.slimesalad.com/forum/viewgame.php?t=6275

Unconfirmed and Probably Shouldn't Be Entries:

-These are games that the author neither confirmed intention to enter, nor do I feel particularly comfortable including into the Heart of the OHR based on specific issues surrounding the game. You can play them and vote on them if you'd like, but I won't require it.

James Doppler's Epic Sci-Fi Fantasy Quest of Space Time Adventure for the Mind by JimLuc T. Kirkard
Description: Original release, unconfirmed entry, may be too short for requirement.
Download: http://www.slimesalad.com/forum/viewgame.php?t=6233

Reason for Hesitation: One of the more vulgar games I've seen on the OHR in recent years--it seems to revel in it, in fact--and it kind of brings shame to the engine. I won't censor it, certainly, and I won't reject it from the contest because of content. But I don't support it, and I don't encourage it.

Reason Why It's Eligible: It still meets the basic requirements, barely.

Dragons! by Guroo
Description: Original release, unconfirmed entry, uncertain download security
Download: http://www.slimesalad.com/forum/viewgame.php?t=6243

Reason for Hesitation: The download links to an off-site installer. I don't have reason to distrust it, but I can't be sure. If someone wants to try it and confirm its legitimacy, then I'll be more comfortable with it as an unconfirmed entry. In the future, I'll have to make .zip files a requirement for eligibility. But it's too late this year.

Reason Why It's Eligible: The author claims it has at least 5 hours of content. And it definitely looks old school OHR.

Okay, so there you have it. Start playing if you haven't already.

Voting begins now. You may share your votes in this thread, through PM, or through IRC. Remember to rate each game on a scale from 1-10. DO NOT send me a Top 12 list. I don't care what you think is first, second, third best, etc. I care about scores.

Because the holidays are fast approaching, and because Okédoké! La Leyenda Mexicana and Mr. Triangle's Adventure are both 10-25 hour games, I'll be extending the voting period to January 15th to give you all enough time to play through each game in its entirety.

Good luck to the entrants, and get those discussions started.

Thanks again to all who entered.

P.S. The Heart of the OHR 2014 thread on Slime Salad is far more active than the one here, so you might get better results if you post your scores and opinions over there: http://www.slimesalad.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=6164
_________________
Progress Report:

The Adventures of Powerstick Man: Extended Edition

Currently Updating: General sweep of the game world and dialogue boxes. Adding extended maps.

Tightfloss Maiden

Currently Updating: Chapter 2
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Pepsi Ranger
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Joined: 05 Feb 2003
Posts: 491
Location: South Florida

PostPosted: Wed Feb 04, 2015 6:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Okay, the moment of truth has arrived. The voting period has ended, the votes have been compiled, and the results have been tabulated. To find out how it all went down, check out the official results article here:

http://superwalrusland.com/ohr/Heart2014/HOHR2014.html

Note: I'm supposed to be getting a cross-posting at the Hamster Wheel soon for double the archive.

This year's contest was hard-fought, but in the end we found our winner, so please congratulate him or her.

If you've offered a prize, go ahead and make your plans with the winner and with anyone who satisfies your specific prize conditions. Here again is the list of prizes offered at the beginning of the contest and the names of the people who offered them. Please note that given the state of flux the community finds itself in constantly, some of the prize-givers may be temporarily absent.

Potential community offered prizes include:

-Cafepress T-shirts or swag for winner (courtesy Spoonweaver...and maybe Fenrir-Lunaris?).

-Funding for the swag site (courtesy Mystic). Note: This one's ambiguous to me.

-Custom Mousepads with a group image starring some of the OHR's most popular characters (courtesy RedMaverickZero).

-Reviews for each entry (courtesy Meatballsub)

-Cash prize of undetermined value (need confirmation) for winner (courtesy Meatballsub).

-Pizza delivery to winner or favored game (courtesy Willy Elektrix).

-Poster and icon for winning game (courtesy Ichiro).

-100 dogecoins..."fake Internet moneys" with dog memes (courtesy Bob the Hamster).

-Slimebucks of extremely low but increasing value to the top three winners (courtesy Meowskivich).

Special Prize for OHR Legends releases:

Any game categorized as an OHR Legends release will receive a special trophy classifying it as such. This is strictly a prestige award, but it will remind future players of the game's longevity. This trophy will receive "levels" each time it's awarded to a specific game. OHR Legends releases should still meet the 30 minutes of additional game time rule to be eligible for the trophy.

If you had offered a prize and I had forgotten to add it to this list, please let me know, or post it separately. I know some people inquired about offering a prize but never told me what they were offering.

And that's it. Congratulations to our winner and to those who really worked hard to release some stellar titles. Feel free to debate the results if you'd like.
_________________
Progress Report:

The Adventures of Powerstick Man: Extended Edition

Currently Updating: General sweep of the game world and dialogue boxes. Adding extended maps.

Tightfloss Maiden

Currently Updating: Chapter 2
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