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Betrayal by Fieldmedic (2010/08/17) Summer FM Vertical Contest Entry


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Poll: Betrayal by Fieldmedic (2010/08/17) Summer FM Vertical Contest Entry (56 member(s) have cast votes)

1. Gameplay: Enjoyment. Fun duration. Smooth flow, ect. Versus Bugs. Frustration, Boredom, framelag

  1. Poor (0 votes [0.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 0.00%

  2. Tolerable (11 votes [19.64%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 19.64%

  3. Good (14 votes [25.00%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 25.00%

  4. Excellent (23 votes [41.07%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 41.07%

  5. Near Perfect (8 votes [14.29%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 14.29%

2. Appearance: Vertical use, Visual pleasure, lighting, visual style, deduct bad texturing etc.

  1. Poor (0 votes [0.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 0.00%

  2. Tolerable (2 votes [3.57%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 3.57%

  3. Good (25 votes [44.64%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 44.64%

  4. Excellent (21 votes [37.50%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 37.50%

  5. Near Perfect (8 votes [14.29%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 14.29%

3. Story & Text: Story. Text. Briefing. Graphic storytelling

  1. Poor (0 votes [0.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 0.00%

  2. Tolerable (7 votes [12.50%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 12.50%

  3. Good (22 votes [39.29%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 39.29%

  4. Excellent (21 votes [37.50%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 37.50%

  5. Near Perfect (6 votes [10.71%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 10.71%

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#51 Baddcog

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Posted 19 August 2010 - 12:08 PM

I donīt think the mapper can do sth against these, could he?



monster clip could probably have helped. It's good to put it around all objects that an AI can possibly get stuck on. I even like to 'thicken' walls with it so AI don't scrape against them, stick their heads/torches in them when searching.
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#52 nbohr1more

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Posted 19 August 2010 - 12:20 PM

Yeah. I haven't tried killmonsters yet. I just saw Tels statements about the lights and took it as cursory proof... (Could be both lights and lack of monsterclip though... and leaks, and the need for more visportals, etc...). I'm not sure any place is specifically worse. I just know that as soon as I got up one level I really had laggy play and it was 6FPS at most. I will try killing some options and get you better feedback.
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#53 fraten

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Posted 19 August 2010 - 03:47 PM

(...) Here I will explain my weird thinking/planning process through the building of this mission, along with the
authors explanation of the strange story. (...)


Thank you Fieldmedic! I liked to hear about the background.Gives it all more... background. Ahem. Well, you know what I mean. :rolleyes:

#54 Thiefette

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Posted 19 August 2010 - 04:31 PM

Spoiler



Thanks, will give it a go.

#55 aidakeeley

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Posted 19 August 2010 - 07:31 PM

Staying spoiler free... so I've not read a word elsewhere in this thread.


But I've got some of the most bizarre stuff ever happening in this one:

Spoiler

"A Rhapsody Of Feigned And Ill-Invented Nonsense" - Thomas Aikenhead, On Theology, ca. 1696

#56 Fieldmedic

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Posted 20 August 2010 - 01:57 AM

Staying spoiler free... so I've not read a word elsewhere in this thread.


But I've got some of the most bizarre stuff ever happening in this one:

Spoiler


Spoiler


#57 Fidcal

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Posted 20 August 2010 - 05:18 AM

This is a large full size FM with a lot going for it. Probably only needs a little polishing up here and there and also too much flat lighting. It was spoilt for me by two causes really. One is that accidentally I was playing the wrong version originally so had to start again. This meant if anything went wrong again I wasn't prepared to start a third time. The main problem was not being able to see the lockpicks and they are crucial to the FM. That is partly a Dark Mod issue but also the FM should have a strong clue that they were somewhere in the lower levels (no spoiler is deliberate here) and a clue, maybe even an objective "I'm going need my confiscated equipment before I get out of... etc"

After finishing I loaded the map into DR to see where they were. I had scanned there when playing but couldn't see anything. This is the same problem as for keys. My eyesight is not 20/20. I use my big TV as monitor which means it is further away so some fine detail is lost. I have gamma calibrated according to the trainer so fairly dark. (I suspect some players have it higher.) The lighting was very low there. Items like keys and lockpicks are important so for gameplay reasons I think they should be brighter. I never even saw these lockpicks even though looking near them so even the frob highlight is not enough. And finally, there was no reason to suppose they were there in the story. Leastways, I never found a clue. In the FM you would never know there were any. I only saw a reference to them in a forum but no idea where so I just continued. By the time I was in the upper levels and finding locked doors I started to think they were probably way below but I wasn't going all that way down again.

I resorted to noclipping and in the end my immersion was so totally broken I switched on notarget and just whizzed around to at least assess the rest of the FM for voting. Well, there was a lot more than I thought and I never did complete the main objective plus loot. But still my overall impression was very favourable. I'm going to vote as if I 'accidentally' found the lockpicks which would have transformed the experience.

If nobody else had any problem finding the lockpicks then it's just me and I must find some way to boost the brightness of them and keys for me. This is spoiling missions for me more and more. But if any others failed to find them then I think it would be a good idea to re-release the FM with 'find lockpicks' as a new objective with some indication they are in the lower levels, eg, being examined by ...

Tons of other good stuff and I think everything worked well. I never found anything to break glass apart from broadheads so I'm not sure why that info is there in the readme. Maybe I missed a sword. I tried throwing a stone bust but could not get any forward momentum.

#58 Sotha

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Posted 20 August 2010 - 07:31 AM

If nobody else had any problem finding the lockpicks then it's just me and I must find some way to boost the brightness of them and keys for me. This is spoiling missions for me more and more. But if any others failed to find them then I think it would be a good idea to re-release the FM with 'find lockpicks' as a new objective with some indication they are in the lower levels, eg, being examined by ...


Fidcal, it is not just you. When betamapping, I found the lockpicks only accidentally because I have the habit of blind-frobbing suspicious objects just to be on the safe side. This way I found the lockpicks. My betamapper recommendations was to put a light on the lockpicks, but FM chose to put a light in the room.

Thoughts:
  • Putting a small light on the toolbox would point to the player that there is something useful in the toolbox, if the toolbox was glowing a bit. Frobbing the lockpicks would shut this light down.
  • Putting a hint that the lockpicks are in the mint. But I generally think that objective-system should not be used for hints. It's for objectives.
  • Preventing the player from leaving the lower mines without the picks.
Mappers and players should not rely on habitual blind-frobbing!
If mappers would put simple small lights shining on mission critical objects which are easy to miss, a lot of frustration could be avoided. I'll add some insight on this to the mission design tips wiki article when I have time.
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#59 nbohr1more

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Posted 20 August 2010 - 07:37 AM

Well, I got a little more testing in this morning...

I started with a regular run for a reality check (control). I was dreading things seeing the 6FP hovering in the upper-right. As soon as I escaped the first cell things smoothed out to 18FPS or so. When I got to the 2nd level it was hovering around 12FPS. So it was much more playable. Could be all the mission reloads from my previous session had bogged things down.

I thought I would set the record straight after my whining... (but I still hope a revision might squeeze a little more juice out.) You can't blame the Low-Enders for whining when they miss out on missions that the community raves about ;)
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#60 Mr Lemony Fresh

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Posted 20 August 2010 - 07:49 AM

This one I didn't so much get into :( but the mine was almost perfect.

The chest with the gold nuggets in it was a bother to get, you probably shouldn't have relied on the dark mod's less than practical way of retrieving stuff from a chest. There were 2 nuggets i had to noclip to get in order to avoid being killed.

As soon as i stepped up up out of the mine things seemed to go down hill a bit, which is ironic aye :)

The following will break the mission if you haven't played it yet

Spoiler


Spoiler

Spoiler


btw fidcal, I found the lockpicks, but there are 2 things I'd like to say about that;

Spoiler

Posted Image

#61 Fieldmedic

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Posted 20 August 2010 - 07:49 AM

Okay, lession learned; More aggressive clues onto how to regain essential equipment...

Back to my ordinary map and try to make that one more playable...

@nbohr1more: I wasn't blaming the low-enders for whining, I just meant that if someone makes a place really cool and it requires much lightning, I don't think they should cut down too much on the niceness just to make low-enders have full FPS :rolleyes:

But my map is a disaster in the aspect of flow and FPS it seems, so back to school for me :ph34r:


#62 nbohr1more

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Posted 20 August 2010 - 07:56 AM

Okay, lession learned; More aggressive clues onto how to regain essential equipment...

Back to my ordinary map and try to make that one more playable...

@nbohr1more: I wasn't blaming the low-enders for whining, I just meant that if someone makes a place really cool and it requires much lightning, I don't think they should cut down too much on the niceness just to make low-enders have full FPS :rolleyes:

But my map is a disaster in the aspect of flow and FPS it seems, so back to school for me :ph34r:


I agree. If your look or idea is great but it wont run on a low-end system don't hold back. The low-enders will eventually upgrade anyway. I'm just glad things have smoothed out. I am looking forward to completing this one. :D
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#63 Fidcal

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Posted 20 August 2010 - 07:57 AM

@Sotha: Well I'm kinda glad it's not just me. I've done a fix for all keys and lockpicks for me locally to give them a little boost. I'll experiment for a few days to see which numbers are best. If anyone is interested I'll post the method or even just upload the file. I don't like to mess with these things but when it comes to the stage of not properly being able to enjoy a mission then enough is enough.

It seems to me that what is ideal is that players see keys and lockpicks reasonably easily. I would hope to see something shiny on a guard's belt 10 or 20 paces away. But I don't want super loot glint. I never had any problem in Thief seeing keys that I recall so I just want to get back to that visibility. Anything more is a kind of cheat. If others can see keys OK then fine, I'll just increase their visibility for me up to the same level as everyone else because I see almost nothing.

I've tolerated it so far but now it's seriously spoiling games for me.

#64 Sotha

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Posted 20 August 2010 - 09:01 AM

Non-Pickable Doors, Keys and Mission Critical Objects

Non-pickable locked doors are very dangerous elements. You can ruin your mission with these. Use them sparingly! This kind of door is a plot/mapper imposed obstacle, which requires the player to do things in the order the mapper wants. It may be vital for the plot, but remember that the player *will* be frustrated if he misses the key. Put in clues to lead the player to the key. Put the key in an obvious place so the player will not miss it. Put some kind of light to make the object more visible. Put the key in a logical place!
The same advise applies to any kind of Mission Critical Object the player must possess to make progress. Do not have the player walk all the way to Mordor only to realize he left the hidden One Ring back in the Shire.



http://modetwo.net/d...ion_Design_Tips

Fids, could it be possible to have a link to this wikiarticle from the first page of your A-Z guide? Might be useful.
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#65 Fidcal

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Posted 20 August 2010 - 03:13 PM

Yes. Good idea. I'll add a link.

#66 Fidcal

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Posted 20 August 2010 - 03:18 PM

I've added two links; one near the start and one right at the end.

#67 Fieldmedic

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Posted 20 August 2010 - 03:18 PM

This one I didn't so much get into :( but the mine was almost perfect.

The chest with the gold nuggets in it was a bother to get, you probably shouldn't have relied on the dark mod's less than practical way of retrieving stuff from a chest. There were 2 nuggets i had to noclip to get in order to avoid being killed.

As soon as i stepped up up out of the mine things seemed to go down hill a bit, which is ironic aye :)

The following will break the mission if you haven't played it yet

Spoiler


Spoiler

Spoiler


btw fidcal, I found the lockpicks, but there are 2 things I'd like to say about that;

Spoiler


Spoiler

Edited by Fieldmedic, 20 August 2010 - 03:21 PM.


#68 Fieldmedic

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Posted 20 August 2010 - 03:26 PM

This is a large full size FM with a lot going for it. Probably only needs a little polishing up here and there and also too much flat lighting.


Nooooooo, no more talk about the lighting :o Please tell me how I can make it better. Do you mean I should have more intricate geometry around the lightsources to produce more shadows? Should I remove shadows? I believe the lightning is one thing in my map that cripples the Low-end gang :mellow:

#69 Fidcal

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Posted 20 August 2010 - 03:45 PM

Good lighting is a big subject but briefly, in this case, it needed more contrast of dark and bright in many places. You only have to look at one room that is only lit by flat ambient light and then place lights around to produce lots of contrast of bright areas and shadows plus the angle of the light brings up the relief contour of textures and suddenly the room is transformed; more beautiful, more interesting, better gameplay for dodging in and out of shadows. The same applies to steady bright light that covers the whole area with little contrast. It has no character. Try test lights in different places before finalising their position. I even put lights in 'bad' places, eg, in an alcove, or low down, rather than high and on a jutting beam where it would be sensible (in RL) if that gives a better effect.) Paint with light and shadow to enhance the scene. Maybe I should post some before and after pictures in the editing tips thread.

#70 nbohr1more

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Posted 20 August 2010 - 03:48 PM

( Reducing your light radius (falloff) will actually reduce the chance of light overlaps and thus improve low-end performance. )

(Edit: The above was me praying to the performance gods that something easy may have been overlooked... )

(More Prayer: Even if no other lights are visibly overlapping your light radius is still affected by the ambient. Smaller radius = better performance. But this is probably a negligible improvement idea at most... So: Smaller radius = maybe better looking lighting and that's it? ...)

Edited by nbohr1more, 20 August 2010 - 06:59 PM.

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#71 Fieldmedic

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Posted 20 August 2010 - 03:50 PM

( Reducing your light radius (falloff) will actually reduce the chance of light overlaps and thus improve low-end performance. )


Yes, but I don't think there is many places besides the archery range that has overlapping lighting...Whatever...I just want to forget that mission by now <_<

#72 nbohr1more

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Posted 20 August 2010 - 04:13 PM

Yes, but I don't think there is many places besides the archery range that has overlapping lighting...Whatever...I just want to forget that mission by now <_<


My apologies Fieldmedic.

Performance benefits are what they are.

The Archery range in the Training Mission would perform better if the lights did not overlap.

( Edit: Ah... your Archery range... :blush: ... Bikerdude worked with you and he's been obsessed about that map so I lost context :laugh: )

It just happens to perform well overall.

I have not done a deep-dive in the Pk4 but the use of custom Light Textures in that area might be part of the magic. As there are no AI in that area, I am pretty sure that all the lights are set to noshadow as well.

It would be cool if the authors of the Training Mission would comment...

Edited by nbohr1more, 20 August 2010 - 04:27 PM.

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#73 Fieldmedic

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Posted 20 August 2010 - 04:28 PM

Well, well, I believe I set to high demands on myself...after all it's the first map I release. I am now in full work with my "main" map that I deserted for this contest...It certainly will have unique elements! B)

#74 Thiefette

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Posted 20 August 2010 - 05:03 PM

Am enjoying the challange of not having a
Spoiler
Thanks

#75 Fieldmedic

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Posted 20 August 2010 - 05:08 PM

Am enjoying the challange of not having a

Spoiler
Thanks


Spoiler





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