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Let's Discuss What to do after a level shortcut?

Discussion in 'Level Creation Help' started by HaseebDemon, Feb 23, 2020.

  1. HaseebDemon

    HaseebDemon Well-Known Member

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    Since I loved finding new ways to win and uploaded them but it was also some kind of bad feeling authors deleted their levels or never uploaded back!

    But then I left uploading shortcuts but I think the author should delete their levels or also it's up to the author if he doesn't want to delete the level and not to fix it but a player should always play the intended way and rate the level according to intended way!

    What is a shortcut? ( My Opinion ):
    I think shortcut is completing a level in less time than the intended way. The shortcut does not depend on tricks or not doing tricks!
    Just completing a level faster is called a shortcut

    In-case if the author deletes the level ( My Opinion ):
    The author should add a spoiler in comments uploading a old-version of the level (If he wants) just for learning purpose so in-case other players will see how and where is the shortcut and how it's done in a certain way and learn from it instead of finding other levels or forums they will learn from shortcut + level tricks + level logic itself too from the same level

    In-case if the author doesn't delete the level ( My Opinion ):
    The author should add a spoiler in comments uploading the shortcut! For learning purpose

    Why feel bad about shortcuts? ( My Opinion ):
    There are too many things in a level and you're trying to create a level and while testing them maybe you'll miss something so a person has to break his assumption to reach only here by this trick and try watching every way to reach there

    But everyone thinks differently and maybe will see something like a shortcut and try to exploit it

    So, it's not possible to see everything and also a person should'not feel bad about it. it's not a mistake and also you may be learned from it

    So, Just enjoy learning something new and enjoy shortcuts


    Was it a mistake?
    No, we cannot call this a mistake but Yes, this is missed and it will also help the author why he missed it and how he missed it while testing to help him not only think better while testing the level also will help him by recreating the level or creating a new level.

    A Story of My level "ThEscape 4rm Z's"
    Players founded a shortcut in my level by using the autopilot after dropping the ball which I knew but the ground floor was blocked with inset stairs which I taught B will not pass them!

    But SBS is enough to pass these stairs

    So, I learned this that B is able to pass inset stairs by doing the SBS!
    But when I'm re-creating the level I used the same effect of autopilot on the ball (which I knew but I didn't know about the inset stairs SBS thing)

    On the different parts of the level as a trick!

    Difference b/w Level Creation and Finding shortcut on a level:
    1) Creating a level is much harder than finding a shortcut on a level
    2) Creating a level takes time where finding a shortcut doesn't take too much time
    3) Creating a level, the creator thinking only about the tricks sometimes and because of this assumption the creator cannot see or think completely different about reaching on places with other tricks or with other ways
    Where a person who is playing the level is in fresh mood just wants to play mekorama and there's no other thing going on his mind. the player doesn't know how to complete the puzzle so the player explores the level around him and will find some shortcuts may be some different ways to reach on different levels

    Also, sharing these ways helps the community and this forum
    Also, helps the level creator and the player

    Why I posted this:
    Just to clear this and want to share my thoughts about feeling bad about these shortcuts or some random thoughts in my mind :D

    Make sure to vote to agree or disagree or reply to correct me in some places
     
    Anomynous, mothproof and BangTe like this.
  2. Patranak32

    Patranak32 Member

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    Ye.They keep finding shortcuts in my levels.I tried to reupload the level fixing the shortcut but they found a new one.
     
  3. mothproof

    mothproof Well-Known Member

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    Thank you for this post, and for clearly voicing out such a valid concern regarding shortcuts.

    I've been looking for a particular level among all the files here (all 1200+ pages, to no avail), and during all that effort, I was able to revisit old levels, play the ones I haven't seen before, and more importantly read the comments and interaction of the community. Back then a level was praised if it allowed multiple ways to get to the win. Which was inevitable. Like you said, each player will approach a level with their own perspective and playstyle, and discover a new route other than the creator's intended path. And that's fine. That's Mekorama for you: B and R doing the seemingly impossible, in whatever way it takes.

    A glaring shortcut though can leave a bad taste in the mouth of veteran players, I guess. Once you find a shortcut, it'll be hard to unsee it, and harder, still, to resist using it. New players who aren't aware of tricks won't have a problem with that naturally (Ignorance is bliss). So then it becomes a question of balance and care. Making sure that your levels satisfy both new and experienced players, without dumbing it down for the latter, and without intimidating the former. It's a tough balancing act, especially if you're not aware of the tricks.

    In a way, a shortcut can be likened to a plot synopsis of a film (I realize I'm comparing two totally different medium, film and a game, but stick with me and this analogy for a sec). The synopsis is the easy, speedy summarized version of the film. It's there for a purpose, but it won't replace the experience of watching the film in its entirety. By that same vein, it also makes sense to judge a film in its entirety, and not through its synopsis.

    That said, it's still going to be hard to rate a level with a shortcut with all fairness. I guess the proper thing to do is to try playing the intended way, then judge it according to that. I'd be hard-pressed myself to give a perfect score to a level with a shortcut, but I try to imagine what the intentions of the creator are and the enjoyment the majority of players will have playing that level, not just a select group of people. (Obviously if a hard-core level is meant to cater to veterans, it pays to be extra careful with building the path.)

    Back in the early days, when few people were aware of tricks, most levels had a shortcut or two, but that shouldn't steal away the enjoyment of playing the level.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 3, 2020
    nGord likes this.
  4. trids

    trids Famous Member

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    It's not quite as simple as that. Back then (I was there) there was a strong resistance by some to unorthodox techniques, techniques that were considered heresy, and libelled as "cheats". The praising that you noticed was the reaction of more open minded players to this perceived outrage .. often in recognition of new exploits that are now cherished as standard tricks; often in celebration of the extra value achieved by puzzles with multiple solutions.

    What extra value? The further enjoyment by players than a single solution can offer; the opportunity for players to think outside the box; and the learning opportunities for players and designers alike.

    Correct, but there's more: shortcuts then and now are precious learning opportunities ..
    because both designers and players get to learn about new techniques. And therefore "shortcuts" should be cherished and not scandalized.

    Regrettably, even now these opportunities are not always appreciated for what they are, instead often being maligned to the point of designers vandalising their own works, under pressure from players who bully them into making their efforts more "acceptable", or "more worthy" of stars. And in the process, the opportunity to learn is lost. In fact one could even argue that those who might have learned have been cheated out of the opportunity!

    In conclusion, i suppose there is a natural tendency on the part of some designers with an unusually strong competitive streak to be embarrassed when a player finds an unintended solution to one of their puzzles. But wouldn't the world be a better place if such designers could humbly appreciate the unexpected extra value to other players and designers .. instead of denying others an opportunity to learn; and instead of projecting their own embarrassment onto other designers with less experience?

    In my opinion, the best response by a designer to learning of an unintended solution to his puzzle, would be to add a further card to his original level (in the same thread) with any shortcuts edited out that he might feel unbearably embarrassed about. This generous response would preserve and even extend the learning experience his work offers.
     
    Ray Aznable, nGord and mothproof like this.
  5. mothproof

    mothproof Well-Known Member

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    True. All good points. :)

    I'm all for shortcuts. They shouldn't be demonized or be a cause for embarrassment at all.

    Instead they should be celebrated for all the learning it offers and the richness it adds to this game we love. :)
     
    trids likes this.
  6. Anomynous

    Anomynous Famous Member

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    It feels really bad if anyone finds a shortcut in our levels also if we delete the level after posting then it becomes more hard to fix. I deleted msny levels bcz of shortcut but thanks to @Gepeto 4 3d builder . But if we made a level with sensors so after find a shortcut we have no choice except to make the level again bcz on editing level there's always 90% chance of sonsor/mechanism fails :(

    But if someone finds shortcut in my levels i thanks him :p its a great chance to learn more ;) :)
     
    Gepeto likes this.

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