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My modern weapon concept & plans


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Long ago I started a thread about something I dream of doing in TDM at some point: A mod that introduces modern assets over the default steampunk setup... allowing for futuristic cities, scifi weapons, computers and keypads that can be hacked, security bots patrolling areas, etc. I ultimately aim to create a campaign in the spirit and atmosphere of the first DeusEx game. Needless to say the whole thing will require loads of new assets and special scripts, but in this thread I wanted to present the concept I've been putting together for the first part of my initiative: The weapon system.


So obviously my plan is to first introduce a set of modern weapons, and replace the default ones with them. You can't have the hero sneaking around a futuristic city guarded by cyborgs while wielding a wooden bow :) The base idea is to have the generic types found in most games, such as a pistol / machine gun / shotgun / etc. When I initially put the concept together, I imagined them as plain weapons: Find models and sounds for each gun, make them shoot bullets, and we're done. But I later realized that this is wrong, because it would remove one of the most fun and emblematic features in TDM: The special arrow types. No more shooting water arrows at flames, no more moss arrows dampening noise, no more rope arrows to climb places, etc. The idea behind TDM is that weapons (namely the bow) don't exist only to shoot at enemies, but also to interact with the environment in various ways. So I next started wondering how futuristic guns could also take in the abilities of the special arrow types. Soon enough, the revelation came to mind: Why not turn the special arrows into special projectiles, and allow ammo type to be selected per weapon?


The model I want to go with is basically this: There are various types of weapons, as well as various types of projectiles. The weapon determines the pattern and scale of the projectile(s), whereas the projectile type determines the actual effect. Various weapons can be used with various projectile types, like the shotgun shooting water shells or the grenade launcher shooting noise grenades. Ammo pickups themselves are weapon specific and per type, for example "mossy shotgun shells" or "water 9mm clip". A raw idea of the overall weapons, projectile types, and ammo types planned is this:

  • Weapon - Pistol: Shoots a single projectile, with medium accuracy and medium refire rate.
  • Weapon - Machine Gun: Continuous stream of projectiles with lower accuracy.
  • Weapon - Shotgun: Throws multiple projectiles in bursts, low accuracy and low refire rate.
  • Weapon - Sniper: Shoots a single projectile afar, high accuracy and low refire rate.
  • Weapon - Thrower: Spews a continuous gas, covering large areas at close range.
  • Weapon - Rocket Launcher: Shoots a large projectile that flies slowly through the air.
  • Weapon - Grenade Launcher: Shoots a large projectile that bounces around a few times then explodes.
  • Weapon - Mine Layer: Sticks a projectile to the wall, which explodes when someone gets close.
  • Weapon - Crossbow: Shoots a small projectile that behaves as an arrow.


  • Projectile - Normal: Simple projectile that deals damage on impact (normal arrow).
  • Projectile - Water: Spews water on impact (water arrow).
  • Projectile - Fire: Explodes into flames on impact (fire arrow).
  • Projectile - Gas: Releases poisonous gas on impact (gas arrow).
  • Projectile - Moss: Throws moss around on impact (moss arrow).
  • Projectile - Noise: The projectile remains still and causes noise on impact (noise arrow).
  • Projectile - Rope: Creates a rope which can be used to climb (rope arrow).
  • Projectile - Light: Creates a bright flash that temporarily blinds enemies (flash grenade).
  • Projectile - EMP: Disrupts electronic devices such as bots / turrets / cameras / computers (new concept).


  • Ammo - Bullets: Used by: Pistol, Machine Gun, Shotgun, Sniper. Can be: Normal, Water, Fire.
  • Ammo - Gas: Used by: Thrower. Can be: Water, Fire, Gas, Moss.
  • Ammo - Explosive: Used by: Rocket Launcher, Grenade Launcher, Mine Layer. Can be: Water, Fire, Gas, Moss, Noise, Light, EMP.
  • Ammo - Arrow: Used by: Crossbow. Can be: Normal, Water, Fire, Gas, Moss, Noise, Rope, Light, EMP.

Hopefully you can see what I'm trying to do here: Each weapon can shoot projectile categories that make sense with its pattern. For example: Water bullets are a semi-realistic concept, although rope mines don't make any sense... and noise grenades fit well, whereas noise gas would be plain silly. The crossbow is a visual replacement of the current bow, shooting the existing arrows as they are.


Difficulty wise, implementing this might not be as hard as it can seem: The projectile impact effects are are already there, such as spawning a water burst that puts candles out. Each weapon will also use a single model and base texture... the color of a light or a symbol on its ammo display will indicate the type of ammo loaded in. From here it's just defining the weapons and projectile patterns themselves. With maybe an extra new feature: The ability to change ammo for the same weapon definition, since (unlike the current arrows) we can't define an entire weapon for each combination!


I'd first like to know what you think of this idea, if you see it working out, and if you'd be interested in using such a weapon mod... if not let me know what you think I could change to make it better! I'm also curious if anyone is interested in helping implement this, since considering I never scripted in TDM / idTech 4 before it might take a while for me to get things rolling on my own.

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I don't know. For a sneaker like TDM, firing whatever special projectiles with guns makes no sense because it would be loud and alert everyone! But I like the idea of a modern setting and immediately thought of Hawkeye from the Avengers and his automatic special arrow delivering quiver. Why not use something like this with a high tech composite bow? And then add special modern arrows like EMP...

Edited by wesp5
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To be honest, I have thought about this too for plan B, and I might actually do it first considering it's a lot easier: Don't change any code, and simply override the model / texture / sounds of the existing weapons. In this case I won't even have to rename them, and I can distribute them as a pk4 that can be activated to work with any mission.


The bow can be turned into a high-tech crossbow, which would also have an ammo display showing the arrow count and type. The blackjack becomes either a taser gun, either a police baton. The sword becomes a knife, either a normal steel knife or why not an energy knife. Health potions become medkits. Holy water becomes a battery, which charges water arrows with electricity... same effect but instead of undead it harms machines. Anything else I might have missed can probably be converted to a futuristic variant easily.


Plot wise, this bow would rely on the idea that nano technology has advanced to the point where simple arrows can be infused with various materials in a concentrated form, allowing them to do all the funky things TDM arrows can. They're also cheaper and easier to manufacture than old fashion weapons (like shotguns or snipers), which is why they're the only weapon everyone in the world possesses.


Appearance wise, there are a lot of nice designs I can probably find a model for on Blendswap or OpenGameArt. Perhaps something like this:



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The thing is, you are talking about basicly a TC of dark mod, which would entail hundreds of man hours of work that goes into art and code. With current FPSs your future TDM would need AI to react well under firefights, you would need to make hacking mini game something interesting, you would need to create a whole world and culture. Here's is not really the place where you will likely find people that share that kind of vision of where TDM could go. Your second idea is a lot more doable. If you could create a mix of advanced and medieval technology, build the assets for a map that really fleshes out such a scenario (taking it further than the mostly gothic ones we find today, make it very steam-punky), then maybe you could open a new front where people could build upon what you created and take the idea foward. But you never know, you should mostly do things for yourself, your own pleasure. Counting on the recognition of others to validate what you do/did can often be disappointing (just a personal opinion).

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That's a great looking crossbow. Good luck. Making the new art assets and animations would be a lot of work (and a total conversion would probably be too much unless you can gather a team somehow) but I'm sure people would like to play whatever you come up with.

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Yep... my initial idea would be a lot of work, and I likely couldn't do it alone. Simply creating and animating a different crossbow model for the existing bow should however be easy to do on my own, together with a simple keypad entity and other things. And yes, a mix between scifi and steampunk is both a nice idea, and it would make things a lot easier in this case.

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