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Should small static oil lamps be extinguishable up close?


wesp5

Oil lamps  

38 members have voted

  1. 1. Should small static oil lamps be exstinguishable up close?

    • Yes
    • No
    • Yes or no, depending on a new gameplay setting.
    • Yes or no, depending on how mappers define them.


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Can I get the modified files to work without putting them into the archive pk4s?

Yes. You don't have to touch the archives at all. If your modified file is a def file, for example, put it in a defs/ folder in your dark mod folder, and the game will use it instead of the "official" version that's hidden away in the pk4.

 

You'd probably have got more support if the option had been "add a frob_extinguishable spawnarg for future use". The thing is, we will never risk breaking existing maps, and if we do it by accident, we fix it or revert the change. We must have nearly a hundred maps by now, representing 100000s of hours of work. Part of the deal is that we look after mappers' hard work, even after they've left the forum, and we don't change stuff that could ruin it. There are maps where water arrow management is a key gameplay element... Sotha's map about rescuing a fence in an example that springs to mind (sorry can't remember the name, but I do remember the excitement of finding lots of water arrows then later realizing I was going to need them all!).

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I voted "9/11 was an inside job" because I don't think static oil lamps could melt steel beams.

 

On a serious note though the "frob_extinguishable" spawnarg you suggested Steve is a fantastic idea because I agree that we shouldn't touch existing things but at the same time it would be handy to have that spawnarg on both candles and small oil lamps.

 

The spawnarg could be a happy solution for everyone and if wesp5 wanted to have all of them be that way he could easily set the spawnarg to default to yes in the def file and that would be his own thing. As for mappers going forward it would be handy to do that rather than the current of having the model, having a seperate light entity and then using stim&response to change the candle skin when it is frobbed.

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Yes. You don't have to touch the archives at all. If your modified file is a def file, for example, put it in a defs/ folder in your dark mod folder, and the game will use it instead of the "official" version that's hidden away in the pk4.

 

You'd probably have got more support if the option had been "add a frob_extinguishable spawnarg for future use".

About the pk4s, I think I already tried the files being outside in the folders but it didn't work. Maybe I mistyped something though...

 

I don't really know what the spawnarg thing means, but I guess I know where this is going and added other options to the poll. Can we revote or reset the votes? I think you mean that mappers can set the oil lamps to be extinguishable in DR, no? Would it be too much to ask for an option added to the gameplay settings too? There is a lot of room left there :)...

Edited by wesp5
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No need for votes. All you need to do is betatest the modification till its 100%, release the package and announce it "Hey, if you guys wanna be able to extinguish small oil lamps as you would a candle, put this in your TDM folder".

 

The question of adding this option as a spawnarg for future missions is a separate matter, for the devs to decide (manpower, relevance, etc), IMO.

Edited by RPGista
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@wesp5: Spawnargs are all the lines, that you see in DR on the objects (e.g. classname, frobable, origin ect.). It also took me some time to find out.

 

I think the spawnarg solution would be great. Makes things easier...

 

I'm still not sure why anyone should need S/R spawnargs: "frobable" "1", "frob_action_script" "frob_light_holder_ext" works in my test map.

 

The S/R system was a workaround. I did not get it to work with a "frob_action_script". I was aware, that it was not very elegant :-/

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All you need to do is betatest the modification till its 100%, release the package and announce it "Hey, if you guys wanna be able to extinguish small oil lamps as you would a candle, put this in your TDM folder".

I don't think it's a good idea to post small individual patches to turn things like this on and off. The best solution really would be to add this to the options menu, then it would be included in future versions of the game as well! I don't know how difficult it is to make the options do something, but basically all that would be needed is to swap two tdm_lights_static.def files...

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Spawnargs are the settings that mappers can use to tweak the behaviour of entities that they place in their map. A new spawnarg that defaults to "off" means future mappers have an easy and obvious option, but existing maps don't get changed.

 

I'm still not sure why anyone should need S/R spawnargs: "frobable" "1", "frob_action_script" "frob_light_holder_ext" works in my test map.

 

That's pretty advanced stuff. It's about easiness. TDM and DR have a steep learning curve, and mappers might never discover that method. If we add a spawnarg that shows up in DR on every light entity, that's just easier for everyone. We already have loads of options that are effectively hidden from mappers unless they ask in the forum. Whenever I tweak an entity def, I always update the list of spawnargs that show up in DR and add any missing documentation.

 

The best solution really would be to add this to the options menu, then it would be included in future versions of the game as well!

Still no good (IMHO). This could still destroy a mapper's hard work by making their map play entirely differently from what they worked hard to create. Maps don't have a message to advise players that "this map is intended to be played with stationary oil lamps non-frobbable". I'm not singling out your suggestion, and we do introduce lots of new features. You have no idea how hard we work on backwards compatibility! It's important.

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This could still destroy a mapper's hard work by making their map play entirely differently from what they worked hard to create.

What would be the difference to the AI difficulty settings that might do the same for any old map? Maybe add the option to the difficulty settings instead to general?

Edited by wesp5
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What would be the difference to the AI difficulty settings that might do the same for any old map? Maybe add the option to the difficulty settings instead to general?

The difference is, the AI difficulty settings were around when people were designing the bulk of maps (I think!), Also, AI difficulty settings are about how fast they react, not how many resources you have, so less likely to have been used for designing puzzle situations. It does make a bit more sense, and I wouldn't be dogmatic about any of this. I'd volunteer to implement any suggestion that had a consensus of support from mappers even if I'd argued against it. Mappers are god :)

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Backwards compatibility is just one thing, but there still hasn't been an answer to the question, why stop at oil lamps? If you make oil lamps extinguishable without any resources because it's "more realistic", then why not braziers? Someone in Real Life could easily knock it over and stamp out the flame. Why not torches? Someone in Real Life could easily smother the flame with a bag or bit of cloth. Why can't I take the candle out of the glass enclosure and extinguish it? Why can't I break the glass of the electric light and put it out that way? etc.

 

At the moment, the rule system for putting out lights is entirely consistent. If you can pick it up, then you can put it out. If you can't, then you have to use a tool (or switch). Yes, this is unrealistic and "gamey" (why can a movable candle sitting on a sconce get pinched out but not a static one in a candelabra?) but in a game that is, to a large degree, about managing light, it is a worthwhile compromise.

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Good point, I didn't think of that. Unpredictability is very frustrating for players.

Generally I agree to this, but here it's not that simple. Because unless you read somewhere about it, novice players don't even know that takeable candles can be put out! This seperation might be clear for the advanced TDM player, but for everyone else the logical real world approach would be more obvious and as some others beside me have stated, it just makes no sense that candles can be put out but oil lamps can't. As for torches and braziers and everything else suggested, this would need either new tools or the entity to be moved or destroyed. There is a huge diffence here that should be obvious to everyone.

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novice players don't even know that takeable candles can be put out!

 

The entire reason that you design game systems in a consistent way is so that novice players can learn the rules more quickly.

 

 

As for torches and braziers and everything else suggested, this would need either new tools or the entity to be moved or destroyed.

 

No it wouldn't. You just frob the torch and "poof" it goes out with a muffled sound. You frob the electric light and it breaks. There are no coding issues to stop this from being done and the "logical real world approach" says it should be possible. So why stop at oil lamps?

 

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Did you play the training mission?

Yes, but that was years ago and as it isn't the best mission either, I would assume people forget about such things :). Still this could be fixed by the random tips that are going to be introduced in the next version! I just played the "Crown of Penitence" mission and extinguishing the oil lamps was a blast! There were a lot of them all over the mansion, but I don't think I used this to blackjack a guard that I couldn't have done otherwise. I noticed though, that I use to extingish all candles and lamps to mark my progress ;)...

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I vote for turning the option into a mod. And let players test it and then let each one reach their own conclusions. Perhaps later it can be implemented when others warm up to the idea. But it should be tried and tested before reaching final say.

Edited by Taquito
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You just frob the torch and "poof" it goes out with a muffled sound. You frob the electric light and it breaks. There are no coding issues to stop this from being done and the "logical real world approach" says it should be possible. So why stop at oil lamps?

Maybe because it would be unrealistic? Which was the main reason I brought this topic up in the first place. I don't see the player exstingishing a torch without having either a huge wet cloth or getting the torch out and stomping on it on the floor which isn't always possible. Breaking an electrical lamp would make a lot of noise and you would need to fumble inside to destroy whatever gives off the light without getting electrocuted. But to play devils advocate: of course this could be added and it would give much more depth and realism to the game! Add an inventory item "cloth" and maybe "pliers" and off you go. But I'm really certain that no developer would stray so far away from what is tradition here ;)!

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I'm still not sure why anyone should need S/R spawnargs: "frobable" "1", "frob_action_script" "frob_light_holder_ext" works in my test map.

 

I just used the prefab that was bundled with the game and it had all the S&R jazz on it but your method sounds much better.

 

Just quickly, what happens if you frob the candle and its already out? does it light back up ala Thief 2 style?

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Maybe because it would be unrealistic?

 

 

You're seriously advancing the argument that breaking a glass bulb or stamping out a campfire is _less realistic_ than pinching out an oil flame?

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I just used the prefab that was bundled with the game and it had all the S&R jazz on it but your method sounds much better.

 

Just quickly, what happens if you frob the candle and its already out? does it light back up ala Thief 2 style?

Nothing happens; though if you want that behaviour try frob_light_holder_toggle_light (see quoted comment below) or LightsToggle.

 

// Tels: this one toggles bound flames on/off, depending on the

// state the flame is currently in. Prefer to use LightsToggle() instead, as

// this is a bit instable (depending on a skin that changes), however for

// combo entities without a light holder script object, we can only use this:

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Some things I'm repeatedly thinking about...

 

- louder scream when you're dying

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You're seriously advancing the argument that breaking a glass bulb or stamping out a campfire is _less realistic_ than pinching out an oil flame?

Of course not, but the presentation inside the game would be! Even without seeing my hands, frobing a candle or an oil lamp to put them out seems realistic to me because I know it could be done in reality. It would be even better to see your hands, aka Thief 4, but I doubt this is an option. Now if I would do the same to a blazing torch inside a metal holder, just press frob and it's out without any sound, any mess, taking it out, putting something over it, throwing it on the floor. That would be quite unrealistic!

Edited by wesp5
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