Final Dungeon, Take 5?

So we're drawing ever nearer to that final dungeon, and now that we've had some time to think about it, we've discussed taking a different approach to it! 

We've gone through several iterations already, although none of them have actually left the sketching board as of yet. At first we wanted the dungeon to have one floor representing each major area in the game, then we considered mixing various themes together and at some point we wanted fewer floors but more of a mishmash of everything.... The only thing we've really always agreed upon throughout all this has been that it shouldn't be super long - often we feel like when players get close to the end of a game, there's always a risk of getting fatigued and running out of steam just before the final boss, an effect that is often made worse by overly long and complex final dungeons and boss fights. 

Our latest idea is to have several shorter floors - some or possibly most just a single room's worth, and each floor will touch upon something you've seen or experienced in the game, but in a sort of strange way - imagine something like the creepy version of Startington, but decidedly less creepy and with more gameplay elements!

Our mission for this week game design wise will be to come up with a bunch of room ideas for the first stretch of the game, up until Flying Fortress, and present our ideas on Friday. Which events throughout the game do you find most iconic and would be something you'd expect to see represented in a dungeon like this? And how do you feel about the length of final dungeons? Do you expect a super long finale, or do you prefer it to be a little shorter? 

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  1. I personnaly am a huge fan of overly long and complex final dungeons/boss fights. I fear that a short dungeon as the finale might feel underwhelming, though that might be just me.
    An alternative would be a regular final dungeon for most people, and a post-game that's superhard/superlong dungeon for people that really want to 100% the game. If I recall correctly, there has been mention of something special when you collect everything, so this could be it, though this sadly requires a lot of work.
    I don't even know if anyone from Pixel Ferrets will read this, but if you do, thanks for making such a great game :)

    1. We do indeed read all of these comments, thanks a lot for your input and for enjoying the game :D

  2. I agree that if it's too short, it would feel underwhelming. I think something a little longer than temple of seasons (which is my favorite dungeon btw and reminiscent of Zelda Oracle of Ages/Seasons). The ghost ship was fine but I think the length and difficulty there was partly due to the number of side quests and optional elements available.

    As far as "iconic" moments, I think people's first time in flying fortress and that scene is good. Scenes with Ivy in her office (I always wondered if the artifacts and weapons there would come into place). The flashback dragon scene. Zhamla fight. And last but not least...anything with Luke ;)

  3. I'd want a super long finale to be honest, it suits the nature of the game more than something really short. Something with lots of difficulty and challenge too, ghost ship's content felt very easy I'd like to see some puzzles and challenges be more heavily focused in the final dungeon.