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Opinions about helmets


Springheel
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I've been wanting to add some new helmet designs for our guards, but every time I think about it raises a potential problem that I'd like to get opinions on.

 

 

Currently, most helmets make the wearer more resistant to KOs. Only two designs make the wearer immune. These two 'elite' helmets are recognizable by their face grill. That's a huge abstraction that made sense originally, but is now causing problems. For an easy example of the problem, suppose I took the grill OFF the elite guard helmet. We'd then have a helmet something like this:

 

1716384300.jpg

 

 

Should this helmet be considered a regular helmet, or an elite one? If it's not elite, then that creates the somewhat silly situation of an identical helmet suddenly protecting from rear KOs because you add a few strips of metal to the front. It also means not knowing whether the guard has an elite helmet without seeing him from the front, which is not ideal.

 

If it's considered an elite helmet, then it changes the rules for how players can distinguish between a helmet that provides KO immunity and one that does not. Players can't rely on looking for face grills anymore. This is not great--players should not have to experiment and potentially reload to find out whether a helmet is an elite helmet or not.

 

Keeping the rules as they are doesn't necessarily fix that problem though...would this be considered elite? It's not precisely a face "grill", but still....

 

ab0360.jpg

 

 

So I'm open to suggestions here. The easiest option is not to change anything; don't add any new helmets. But that isn't very satisfying, and someone is bound to model a new one some day.

 

One suggestion I've thought of is changing the rules so that 'elite' helmets become anything that protects both the head _and_ the base of the neck. That has the benefit of being fairly easy to see from behind, and makes some sense...the player could be KOing guards with regular helmets at the base of the neck, so there is a somewhat realistic reason why elite helmets provide immunity. Our existing helmets already follow that rule to some degree...our "regular" helmets don't cover the base of the neck while our elite ones do (though the difference between the regular and elite citywatch helmets is not huge).

 

Anyway, I'd be interested in hearing people's thoughts on this.

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That second is obviously an elite helmet; the first is more of an open case. The logic you outline at the bottom of the post sounds good, too.

Come the time of peril, did the ground gape, and did the dead rest unquiet 'gainst us. Our bands of iron and hammers of stone prevailed not, and some did doubt the Builder's plan. But the seals held strong, and the few did triumph, and the doubters were lain into the foundations of the new sanctum. -- Collected letters of the Smith-in-Exile, Civitas Approved

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One suggestion I've thought of is changing the rules so that 'elite' helmets become anything that protects both the head _and_ the base of the neck. That has the benefit of being fairly easy to see from behind, and makes some sense...the player could be KOing guards with regular helmets at the base of the neck, so there is a somewhat realistic reason why elite helmets provide immunity. Our existing helmets already follow that rule to some degree...our "regular" helmets don't cover the base of the neck while our elite ones do (though the difference between the regular and elite citywatch helmets is not huge).

 

I agree. Helmet protection needs to be discerned from behind, regardless of what's happening in the front.

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I didn't even recognize that knockoutability has something to do with the grill. This is quite strange IMO and I would also agree to to the 'helmet covers neck' approach you mentioned second. As far as I remember this is also the way it was handled in Thief 2, although the difference was indeed more visible. As far as I recognized it you can't knock out guards from the front anyways so the difference should definitely lie in the back.

FM's: Builder Roads, Old Habits, Old Habits Rebuild

Mapping and Scripting: Apples and Peaches

Sculptris Models and Tutorials: Obsttortes Models

My wiki articles: Obstipedia

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My true opinion is I never liked KO immunity as a feature to begin with -- an author should just use a KO limit objective -- but that's not helpful for your question.

My next opinion is, if we have it, then I'll catch right on the first time I try & reload, so I'm easy to roll with anything more or less coherent. So any helmet that pretty much covers the whole head is fair game for it I think, and it's sensible enough. Both of those helmet pictures you posted would be fair IMO.

What do you see when you turn out the light? I can't tell you but I know that it's mine.

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My opinions:

 

Perfect situation:

metal helmet of any kind -> KO immunity

chain coif, cloth hat or less protection -> no KO immunity.

 

This would be clear cut. Any kind of metal helmets means KO immune person. I think KO immunity is a great gameplay element and not all guards are KO-able, keeping the player on his toes. The KO-ability, on the other hand, MUST be clearly discernible and intuitive by the player.

 

The "any metal helmet means KO immunity" change would require updating the city watch heads so that existing mission would be updated as well so that city watch with helmets would be replaced with chain coif. In reality, we cannot go back there so we are stuck with problematic "some metal helmets confer KO immunity and some don't."

 

Therefore the only way out is probably "FANCY helmet means KO immunity" scenario. People will be confused unless the FANCY is something clear and visible. Maybe the un-KO-able helmet should have some kind of visible cushioning? Or it is round in shape? Or it is shiny silver or golden? The un-KO-able helmet must be unique... Looking at medieval helmet designs there are no clear shapes that would intuitively feel better towards KOing. Unusually large helmet? Full helmet, like in springs suggestion? "If helmet covers the head fully and has a sort of eye-slit -> KO immunity." Big helmets like these would be easily spotted from almost any direction. I think it is okay to require the player to observe the AI a bit before going in for the KO, helmets like this would be discernible and okay.

medieval-knight-s-helmet4.jpg?iact=hc&vpx=410&vpy=111&dur=1265&hovh=225&hovw=225&tx=134&ty=117&sig=116144316755589209030&ei=1MjhUIbCFoHd4QSiuIHABQ&page=1&tbnh=138&tbnw=138&start=0&ndsp=57&ved=1t:429,r:3,s:0,i:93AB2967.jpg?iact=hc&vpx=1250&vpy=126&dur=1409&hovh=194&hovw=259&tx=190&ty=124&sig=116144316755589209030&ei=1MjhUIbCFoHd4QSiuIHABQ&page=1&tbnh=138&tbnw=188&start=0&ndsp=57&ved=1t:429,r:9,s:0,i:111

18584.jpg?iact=hc&vpx=88&vpy=146&dur=9&hovh=225&hovw=225&tx=115&ty=124&sig=116144316755589209030&ei=1MjhUIbCFoHd4QSiuIHABQ&page=1&tbnh=136&tbnw=136&start=0&ndsp=57&ved=1t:429,r:24,s:0,i:161

 

Difficult, I admit it. :unsure: Sorry for the stream-of-thought format in post.

Clipper

-The mapper's best friend.

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I honestly think the best distinction would be a helmet that protects the neck (non KO) as opposed to a helmet that sits up on top of the head (KO).

 

Easy to recognize from all angles. One on top of the head wouldn't have a face mask.

 

But most importantly, on top of the head offers less neck protection, and a hard blow to the back of the neck could possibly take someone down.Maybe even knock their helmet off.

 

I've never been a fan of being able to KO helmet guards anyway, but i think full neck coverage gives you a definite NO signal.

Dark is the sway that mows like a harvest

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Some of these look a lot like war/jousting helms - Not that I'm some kind of expert on these things. But they just dont look like something you'd have a guy patrolling in.

 

(Which reminds me, the BBC 3 part docu series : BBC Metalworks! is pretty damn good - well worth ahem, finding 720p rips of - at least the Knights ep.)

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Yes, the bucket helms wouldn't really suit our purposes; they were just for example.

 

Here are some more appropriate helmet types for our setting, that would be considered "elite" helmets if we went with the "cover the base of the neck" rule:

post-9-0-57233700-1357006424_thumb.jpg

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I allways thought the KO immunity was provided by the fact that the concussion does not directly contact with the skull..

So if the helmet is made in a way that it's outer surfaces do not forward the force directly to the head than it provides immunity.

 

in thief2 : Bramguard.jpg

He was KO-able. Helmet contacts with skull directly.

Sheriff_Sword_Guard.jpg

but these guards were immune. See how their helmets are protruded

 

I think these helmets should look like something like this, i think this was already posted in modeling section once.

http://us.123rf.com/...y-headdress.jpg

 

The neck area protection is also good, but i cant see how that would protect from an overhead swing.

Edited by _Atti_
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Actually, you can knock out both kinds of guards. The no-KO police had broader helmets with neck protection.

Come the time of peril, did the ground gape, and did the dead rest unquiet 'gainst us. Our bands of iron and hammers of stone prevailed not, and some did doubt the Builder's plan. But the seals held strong, and the few did triumph, and the doubters were lain into the foundations of the new sanctum. -- Collected letters of the Smith-in-Exile, Civitas Approved

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The neck area protection is also good, but i cant see how that would protect from an overhead swing.

 

It's an abstraction, obviously. In real life a thief would be able to swing in whatever way he wanted, and the only way you could theoretically KO someone with a helmet would be to hit them at the base of the neck. That's the excuse for why you have to KO helmeted guards from behind...you have to take more time and aim your swing more accurately.

 

Ok, I think the idea of "protecting the head and neck" = "immune to KO" is a solid option. My only concern is with the citywatch helmets. I'll be back with screens.

 

(one other wrench to consider...the head preview window in DR does not show the helmet if it is def_attached rather than part of the mesh, as several are. Once we add more helmets, this might lead to mappers choosing "elite" helmets by mistake. Maybe not a big problem?)

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(one other wrench to consider...the head preview window in DR does not show the helmet if it is def_attached rather than part of the mesh, as several are. Once we add more helmets, this might lead to mappers choosing "elite" helmets by mistake. Maybe not a big problem?)

Then it would maybe be a good idea to add the fact if it is a KOable head or not to the heads name.

 

For the reality thingy: I'm not sure if it is as easy to knockout a person that easely (or to make sure he always survives this attempt). ;)

FM's: Builder Roads, Old Habits, Old Habits Rebuild

Mapping and Scripting: Apples and Peaches

Sculptris Models and Tutorials: Obsttortes Models

My wiki articles: Obstipedia

Texture Blending in DR: DR ASE Blend Exporter

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Then it would maybe be a good idea to add the fact if it is a KOable head or not to the heads name.

 

The two existing elite helmets both have the word "elite" in the name, so I can continue that convention.

 

1. Ok, here are the pics of the two elite helmets (left and center), and the regular citywatch helmet (right). The elite ones clearly cover the entire back of the head/neck area, and the regular one clearly leaves the base of the neck free. So far, so good.

 

 

 

 

helmets3.jpg

 

 

2. Here's where things are less clear. Below is an elite helmet on a regular citywatch body. The gap is about the same as the regular watch helmet. It doesn't look like this AI should be immune, but he would be.

 

Fixing this wouldn't be too hard; I could add an extra piece of metal to the helmet that went lower or extend the brim.

 

helmets5.jpg

 

 

3. However, what about the following two cases below, which are regular helmets, where the _body_ armour covers the base of the neck? By current settings, these AI would not be immune to KO. Would that be clear to players? There is more of a gap than there is with the elite helmets, but barely (some bad polys there too I see).

 

I'd recommend just making those AI immune to KOs, but that would be very tricky, since that property is set on the head, and does not take the body mesh into consideration at all. Mappers would have to remember to set a separate 'immune to KO' spawnarg on the AI, which would be a recipe for inconsistency. I don't know if there's any way to address that.

 

I could try and make it more obvious that they can be KO'd by making the gap in the back larger-- either by changing the mesh of the armour or the helmet, but that's not a great option artistically.

 

helmets4.jpg

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It's never simple ;)

 

The neck armor does seem to make the same Non-KO case as an extended helmet. And it's easy enough to see visually.

I think the problem here is we are starting to tread on breaking FM's.

 

Before we had KO guards with elite helmets so anyone who made a map was going by that alone. Nobody even considered armor as part of the deal. So if we make that Non-KO it will break old maps, or at the very least make things confusing.

 

I assume the No-KO prop is just added to the AI, so old maps won't break, but people won't KO guards they could have which might have effects on old maps game play. Or players will try and ko new guards because of what they are used to.

Dark is the sway that mows like a harvest

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Although TDM is based on a fantasy setting, I don't think you should be using Great Helms for the elites. Historically those date back to the high middle ages, when armour making was taking its first steps into becoming a more refined craft. The Bascinet helms actually correspond to an advancement over Great Helms, as they were both more resistant, lighter, more comfortable, and provided more visibility to the user. My suggestion is that you experiment with different bascinet shapes and designs in order to come up with something that's easily distinguishable (accessories such as spikes or visible reinforced plaques on the back could be used for this purpose), or simply don't give bascinets to non-elites at all.

 

EDIT: Another option would be to give elites Sallet helms, as they feature a distinct neck protection that's very easy to associate with KO immunity.

Edited by zergrush
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  • 4 weeks later...

EDIT: Another option would be to give elites Sallet helms, as they feature a distinct neck protection that's very easy to associate with KO immunity.

 

It's round, most of the helmets in TMD is round, thats why we need large square helmet - its easy to see it is a different type of helmet

dep_5318522-Iron-helmet.jpg

Edited by someTaff

What excuse do we have not to sculpt, and sculpt, and sculpt, until the job is done?

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If you hit him on the head, instead of KOing him, it makes a bell-like noise with 10s after-harmonics that carries about 2km in open fields, and about 500m..1km in a city depending on the height of where the guard and you where standing :D Afterwards both you and the guard are deaf for 3 minutes :D

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"The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man." -- George Bernard Shaw (1856 - 1950)

 

"Remember: If the game lets you do it, it's not cheating." -- Xarax

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If you hit him on the head, instead of KOing him, it makes a bell-like noise with 10s after-harmonics that carries about 2km in open fields, and about 500m..1km in a city depending on the height of where the guard and you where standing :D Afterwards both you and the guard are deaf for 3 minutes :D

:D that defenetly will blow someone's cover, wich is the point of No-KO helmet use - u can't knock guy in it, and if attempted - prepare to meet it's owner) Wich reminds why the need to diffirentiate helmets better, it has to have some outstanding feature - different shape is the easiest to percept

 

Here's some good knocking on 0:50, 1:00, and 2:56)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mjEcj8KpuJw

Edited by someTaff

What excuse do we have not to sculpt, and sculpt, and sculpt, until the job is done?

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  • 1 month later...

Realistically, if a guard was wearing these heavy metal helmets he could not hear nearly as well as the mod makers are portraying them. Much less catch an armorless, light-on-his-feet thief running away.... and if it's a covered face helmet he couldn't see very well at all - especially sidevision.

A thief should have a huge advantage not being seen or heard from a heavily armored guard.

If you can't ko an elite guard you should at least have the sound/movement advantage as he's not as alertable. (homemade word)

 

It seems that combat is playing a much bigger role in TDM.

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I'd rather have something like this then, because much like Tels said, a bucket shaped great helm makes a nasty echo that would stun or even potentially knock out the guard. A closed bascinet should be recognizeable enough from afar. A few extra details would also help make it a bit more unique.

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