I hate to flame you guys (hah. I’m lying. you know I love it! and I know you do, too :P).
But the frame drum? Well. It’s…quite daffy. Absolutely rotten, even. I mean you didn’t just drop the ball…you dropped it, deflated it, let a ranger’s pet run off and bury it, dig it back up and play tug with a quaggan with it, and then spit it into the mystic forge with three level 20 blues. It is now very soggy and plays like complete poopy. Listed below are the biggest issues I have with it in its current state. Have fun reading all the negative feedback, and give my regards to the old drawing board.
Issue 1) Strike timing is delayed by anywhere from 100 to 300 milliseconds. When you strike a drum, it plays sound immediately, not a quarter of a second later. This bug by itself is enough to completely destroy this instrument’s function. If you fix only one thing, it should be this.
Issue 2) Multiple random sounds per drum. Drums do not play more than one note at random (unless you’re so clumsy you miss bad enough to strike two inches from the rim, in which case that’s your fault, not the drum’s); they play one note, the same note, every time you strike them. So why can I hit just the 3 key and get up to 3 different sounds? Never knowing which sound is going to play and when? If you fix only two things, this should be the second.
Issue 3) Record loop has no visual indicator of where it is in the measure, and the metronome doesn’t always play. So you basically have no idea what the timing is actually like. It also doesn’t appear to start looping from the strike of the first note; it starts counting the measure as soon as you hit the record loop button. A measure shouldn’t actually start recording until I begin playing. This is why at rehearsals and in recording studios, the drummer gives a four count to the band before they actually play the song. The song’s timing is relative to the first strike of the song, not to when the engineer hits the record button.
Issue 4) There is no way to increase or decrease the tempo while in record loop mode. The loop has one speed/bpm and only one, making upbeat and offbeat songs pretty much impossible.
Issue 5) There is a skill lockout when you play too fast. Seriously. This is just psychotic design. I can spam flute notes all day as fast as I want, but a drum, the one instrument where fast, highly responsive play is essential, actively blocks you from playing it up to speed? You are hereby awarded one demerit.
Issue 6) Maximum repeated strike speed is abysmally slow. I can sit there and do E. Honda’s thousand-hand-slap on the 4 key and the fastest repetitive responsiveness I’ve gotten is 8th notes. EIGHTH NOTES!? Come on, now. Y’all are killin’ me here. I want to play “I wanna be sedated” not play like I’m sedated :P
Issue 7) There is no way to save a drum loop over the prefabs on the second page. There are 5 pre-recorded drum loops, taking up space on the skill bar, and I can’t substitute them for something that I’ve recorded, or even just something more useful. One thing you can do is just have skill 9 on the second page be the “prefabs” button, that when active, makes the prefabs (1 through 5 and the two “random solo” buttons) appear in place of the actual playable drum notes(that should be there but aren’t). Then you can change the “normal” skills that appear on the second page to something more sensible. Maybe use these to separate the currently randomized sounds that play when you hit the same drum over and over again on the first page. It’s not exactly saving your own pre-recorded drum solos and rhythms, but it would still be better than having all the prefabs clog up the second skill page.
I know it’s a lot to take in. But the way you get things right is by knowing when you get them wrong, and then making corrections as needed. I’ve been playing drums for sixteen years, and believe me when I tell you, there’s quite a bit wrong with the frame drum. I know this kitten’s not easy to do. I’ve also written code and script before. Simulating a musical instrument through a game’s skill interface has all kinds of restrictions on it. But after seeing what you guys were able to do with the flute, I know you can pull something off waaaaay better with the frame drum if you want to. Here’s hoping you do.
(lifts beer bottle)
You have your orders, marines. Dismissed.
Edit: “This kitten’s not easy…” Huh. I don’t recall saying “kitten” there. I could have sworn I said “kitten”. Wait, you can say “mystic forge” but you can’t say “kitten”? What kind of bull kitten is that?
(edited by Metal Maniac.7435)