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Cyberpunk mod: Plans & Contribution feedback


MirceaKitsune
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Contribution feedback  

20 members have voted

  1. 1. How interested are you in the project, and would you be willing to contribute? Please read at least the paragraphs in red before voting!

    • I'm interested and willing to contribute, both by creating new content and porting existing assets.
      3
    • I'm interested and willing to contribute, but only by porting existing assets.
      1
    • I am interested but not willing to contribute.
      9
    • Not interested.
      7


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It's not very complicated but a little tricky in places. First of all you need the md5 IO script for Blender... I believe the one I'm using is this:

 

https://www.katsbits.com/smforum/index.php?topic=520.0

 

Setup: You must have one or more mesh objects rigged to an armature as usual. Each mesh object represents a different material, the name of the material on each object represents the texture that material will point to. Additionally every surface on the mesh must be UV unwrapped, whereas the bones must be on the armature layer where the script expects it (layer 5 by default I think).

 

For the md5mesh: Just select both the mesh and the rig, and export to md5mesh. Disable reorient as this seems to mess up the rotation.

 

For the md5anim: On the control armature, select the armature action of the animation you wish to export. Make sure to set the start frame of the scene to 1 and the end frame to the last frame of that animation! Then once again select both the mesh and rig, and export to md5anim. Again disable reorient as this seems to rotate it on its own.

 

If you want an example setup, the ready blend sources of the bow and Xonotic characters are both included in the repository. You can find them here:

 

https://gitlab.com/darkmodule/darkmodule/blob/master/tdmu_player01.pk4dir/source/md5/weapons/compoundbow/compoundbow.blend

https://gitlab.com/darkmodule/darkmodule/blob/master/tdmu_ai_troopers01.pk4dir/source/md5/chars/troopers/troopers.blend

Very cool. Will study these. If I get that far, I shall ask for more info on the defs and how to setup the weapons and stuff like that! Thanks for taking the time.

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Very cool. Will study these. If I get that far, I shall ask for more info on the defs and how to setup the weapons and stuff like that! Thanks for taking the time.

 

Awesome... thank you! You can find the defs themselves here, which I simplified to the best extent possible (every file starting with tdmu_weapon):

 

https://gitlab.com/darkmodule/darkmodule/tree/master/tdmu_player01.pk4dir/def

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  • 3 weeks later...

As I prepare to implement the Combat Knife (Short Sword replacement) and Police Baton (Blackjack replacement) now that the basis of the Compound Bow are there, I figured I'd share another part of the plan that's going to come up soon in my fork.

 

Similarly to vanilla TDM, I plan to have a base story (cities, factions, characters, etc) meant to be expanded upon by each individual fan mission (unless they go with a fully original background which is of course okay). Now that the Xonotic cast was ported and is in usable condition, I've been thinking of how to divide each of the characters into factions. After pondering upon what would make the most sense, who should be the ally or enemy of who, so on and so forth... I've come up with a structure I'm confident will sit well. I figured I'd share it for critique, in case anyone can suggest any changes or better names and the like. First of all the model references, use these with the screenshots above to tell who is who:

  • Umbra / Pyria: The skinny female and the person wearing a thin mask covering their face.
  • Ignis / Seraphina: The male and female humans in the thick suit, both come in masked and unmasked variants.
  • Megaerebus / Erebus / Nyx: The heavily armored cyborgs with round heads.
  • Terminus / Termina: The heavily armored cyborgs with pointy heads, as well as hoses connected between their limbs and torsos.
  • Gak: The green aliens with flat faces and antennae, they come in masked and unmasked variants.
  • Draconi: The yellow aliens with horns that look like humanoid lizards.

So without further delay, this is how I decided to divide them into groups and factions so far:

  • Umbra:
  1. Description: The Umbra was created as a secret government agency, typically specialized in top level espionage and assassination missions. Upon discovering evidence of government corruption, members of the faction slowly rebelled. Today only a few Umbra exist, hiding in the shadows and plotting to take down the government.
  2. Alliance: Pro-government (if the action takes place in the past) or anti-government (if the action takes place in the future). If the action takes place during the time of the revelations, the Umbra betray the government and change alliance during the mission. Neutral toward Draconi, may be persuaded to form an alliance. The player is part of this faction, all Umbra are the player's colleagues.
  3. Models: Umbra, Pyria
  4. Color: White
  • Police:
  1. Description: The city police force, occasionally hired as guards by government agencies in areas of special interest. Responds to the government, by which it is tasked to maintain public order and enforce curfew hours.
  2. Alliance: Strongly pro-government. Sides with or against the Umbra and player based on their stance toward the government (see above). Will always attack Draconi, except for traitors who choose to serve the government. Some local police forces may rarely desert against the government upon proof of corruption.
  3. Models: Ignis, Seraphina
  4. Color: Blue
  • Terminus Troopers:
  1. Description: The Terminus project is the result of a government experiment, who's aim was creating an army of superhuman soldiers. Their very existence is a secret and known only by a select few. They are tasked to guard secret government bases and objectives, as well as carrying out secret military operations and territorial occupations. Due to high expenses and the medical implications of the procedure, relatively few Terminus troopers exist.
  2. Alliance: Strictly pro-government. Sides with or against the Umbra and player based on their stance toward the government (see above). Will always attack Draconi, except for traitors who choose to serve the government. Always aids the police, with the exception of police forces that desert against the government.
  3. Models: Terminus, Termina
  4. Color: Red
  • Cerulean Guard:
  1. Description: Cerulean Guard is a security firm for hire, allowing groups to hire their specialized troopers as guards to defend their locations. Favored by the government, Cerulean Guard is subject to strict regulation and typically hired only by lawful firms and rich people. Their troopers are partially augmented, using older technology from the Terminus project called Erebus, which was released to the company by the government upon being obsoleted by newer augmentation technology. They are the competitor of Transgenic Security, although they typically serve rich and / or lawful groups in contrast. Note: The name Cerulean was chosen as a tribute to DeusEx - The Nameless Mod, which contains a faction for hire called Cerulean Security.
  2. Alliance: Independent, each group serves the faction it was hired by. If ever given freedom of choice, they are most likely to side with the government.
  3. Models: Megaerebus, Erebus, Nyx
  4. Color: Cyan
  • Transgenic Security:
  1. Description: Transgenic Security is the largest corporation dealing in genetic engineering. They produce semi-sapient creatures with high physical strength, which are sold to other groups who use them as security guards or to establish private armies. The company isn't seen well by the government and operates at the limit of legality, being the favorite choice of shadowy organizations in need of mercenaries thanks to lax legal requirements and cheap prices. Their only successful creature remains the Gak, after the company's failure to produce a stable Draconi (see below). They are the competitor of Cerulean Guard, although they typically serve poor and / or unlawful groups in contrast.
  2. Alliance: Independent, each group serves the faction it was hired by. If ever given freedom of choice, they are most likely to side with the Draconi.
  3. Models: Gak
  4. Color: Lime
  • Draconi:
  1. Description: The Draconi were genetically engineered by Transgenic Security, and intended as a newer and improved version of the Gak. Due to their higher sapience and increased intelligence, the Draconi soon realized they're being used as slave guards by the humans, and decided to rebel and form their own faction. Upon taking over several Transgenic Security laboratories, Draconi have been able to continue their own production and create improved versions of themselves. The race has vowed revenge against both Transgenic Security and the government, although they harbor no ill intent toward ordinary civilians and groups that don't aid the government. Draconi are considered a public safety hazard and are actively hunted down by police, who are often overpowered by the creatures and unable to face them. Draconi usually live in poorer parts of the city, or the sewers and obscure alleys around the richer parts.
  2. Alliance: Anti-government, will also attack all police. Neutral toward other factions, will usually not attack unless provoked. Occasionally makes alliances with other anti-government groups, and may be persuaded to join the Umbra and player in the right conditions. On rare occasions, some Draconi may betray the group and work as special forces for the government (alongside Terminus).
  3. Models: Draconi
  4. Color: Gold
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It appears the combat knife got finished earlier than I expected. It's now available on Git, offering a new model for the same functionality as the short sword (attack from 4 directions, parry, etc).

 

https://www.blendswap.com/blends/view/74407

 

Last on the list as far as new weapons are concerned (for the time being) will be the police baton. Since this one is so simple, I think I'm going to model and texture it from scratch. It can be expected around next week, especially since I can reuse the knife animations and won't have to make new ones again.

 

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Since I'm going for a detailed interactive world, I decided I'll want at least 4 melee weapons available. As the defs and animations were already done and all I had to do was make a copy and swap the models, it took me only a day to implement 2 extra variants. Normally I'd have considered even more melee objects, however I'm still using the idTech 4 weapon catalog which is limited to 16 definitions and there will also be 8 arrow types for the Compound Bow, thus I'm sticking to 4 until later when a grid inventory may be implemented.

 

Git now features a Baseball Bat (alternative to the Police Baton) and a Crowbar (alternative to the Combat Knife). The bat + crowbar will be the melee set of thugs and militias, whereas the baton + knife will be the arsenal of police and troopers. Currently there are no differences between the variants, but I plan to tweak the settings to make each one slightly unique. The binds are defined as follows:

  • def_weapon1 baseballbat
  • def_weapon2 policebaton
  • def_weapon3 crowbar
  • def_weapon4 combatknife
  • def_weapon5 nano_simple

The crowbar model was made by me whereas the baseball bat was created by Duion, both licensed CC0:

 

https://www.blendswap.com/blends/view/66593

 

Obligatory screenshots below. The next step is to tweak the new weapons and do potential cleanups, then I should be able to setup a new HUD. Once that's out of the way, I may begin considering porting my old City map for Xonotic, which I'll be using to showcase the mod using an original FM.

 

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Edited by MirceaKitsune
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  • 1 month later...

Cool little additions, Mircea, even if many of the current models are placeholders.

 

Do you need any help with concept art or similar stuff ? Or do you have everything already worked out ?

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Cool little additions, Mircea, even if many of the current models are placeholders.

 

Do you need any help with concept art or similar stuff ? Or do you have everything already worked out ?

 

Thank you! That part I am fine with: I will primarily port models from Xonotic, BlendSwap, OpenGameArt, etc... I'm not a good artist myself, but what exists there is enough to find a good set of models to build the mod with.

 

What I'll greatly need help with will be original scripts: The mod will be modifying or building upon some of the functionalities of vanilla TDM, and many of those things I don't know how to do. I'll want a few daring changes in the end... such as an augmentation system, weapon modding, a grid inventory (similar to Minecraft / DeusEx), an AI for bots that can shoot (can be based on the Steambot), and of course the interactive screens from Doom 3. For now I'll be working on more assets, and once there's enough to establish a theme the time will come for that part.

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Thank you! That part I am fine with: I will primarily port models from Xonotic, BlendSwap, OpenGameArt, etc... I'm not a good artist myself, but what exists there is enough to find a good set of models to build the mod with.

 

What I'll greatly need help with will be original scripts: The mod will be modifying or building upon some of the functionalities of vanilla TDM, and many of those things I don't know how to do. I'll want a few daring changes in the end... such as an augmentation system, weapon modding, a grid inventory (similar to Minecraft / DeusEx), an AI for bots that can shoot (can be based on the Steambot), and of course the interactive screens from Doom 3. For now I'll be working on more assets, and once there's enough to establish a theme the time will come for that part.

Daunting, but sounds like you have a real plan.

 

Will there be a stun pistol (perhaps like an advanced taser, maybe even with secondary melee) or a fletchette/dart pistol, in addition to the bow ? I think those sorts of small ranged weapons could fit the hi-tech espionage context rather well.

 

What sort of tools, gadgets and devices will you have in the mod, besides weapons ? Will you keep some form of lockpicks and stun bombs, maybe introduce a jammer or something ? I think having a few well-defined gadgets that help with infiltration, stealing data, etc., would be rather important when you'll have more time to focus on what the style of missions will be like.

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Daunting, but sounds like you have a real plan.

 

Will there be a stun pistol (perhaps like an advanced taser, maybe even with secondary melee) or a fletchette/dart pistol, in addition to the bow ? I think those sorts of small ranged weapons could fit the hi-tech espionage context rather well.

 

What sort of tools, gadgets and devices will you have in the mod, besides weapons ? Will you keep some form of lockpicks and stun bombs, maybe introduce a jammer or something ? I think having a few well-defined gadgets that help with infiltration, stealing data, etc., would be rather important when you'll have more time to focus on what the style of missions will be like.

 

In a first phase, I'm re-implementing the original TDM tools in modern variants. This is almost ready as is shown in the screenshots above.

 

Later I hope to have a system where weapons can be defined with multiple ammo types, as well as upgraded from terminals. I'll then port the TDM arrows (water, fire, moss, etc) as bullet types for various weapons (pistol, shotgun, machine gun, etc). This will be quite the trick to achieve, but that's the model I intended since a few years ago when I first planned the project.

 

The goal is to have a cyberpunk version of TDM. Gameplay wise, the main differences will be that it may focus a little more on hacking, items and inventory, as well as being designed for slightly longer campaigns rather than short one-time missions (though both will be welcome).

 

Is this different to the thing freyk is working on?

 

My mod is currently separate, yes. I might take inspiration from some of the ideas in his version of the mod, but for now I'm going with my own assets and approach. We are discussing how to collaborate on the common goal of a futuristic TDM mod, but for now I myself need to be clear of where my version is going and what I'm going to get done on my own first.

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  • 6 months later...

I've been away, but now I'm back to work on this mod yet again. Before continuing to add new things, there's one final correction I wanted to make; Replacing the Compound Bow with a proper badass looking rifle. The bow was a more temporary solution, which I mainly went with thinking I wouldn't have to make new animations for the AI... it was naive to think I could avoid that and get away with taking the lazy route, so now I went back and did things right.

 

The new rifle is based on the Nex gun from Xonotic. There will be 8 different models and colors for each plasma type (normal, water, fire, moss, gas, shock, noise, rope). Each uses a different variation of the weapon, consisting of different colors as well as a different pads on the tip of the gun model (more on that in the upcoming posts). For now I'll post a few screenshots of the base rifle... the fun stuff comes once the others will be implemented as well :)

 

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Just finished implementing the base definitions for all 8 rifle types. At the moment they still shoot simple plasma (the TDMU replacement for arrows); The next step is to implement the actual arrow effects from each bow in vanilla TDM, which later down the road will be customized with its own models and sounds and particle effects.

 

First a look at the ammo containers, themselves taken from Xonotic using the new cell model by Morphed. Each color and size represents the ammo type.

 

DuOTWLt.jpg

hVZHd2v.jpg

Edited by MirceaKitsune
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The weapon design I chose to go with is an universal plasma rifle, which can be customize with modification packs (the ammo boxes) to have various properties. When no modifications are used, a simple plasma stalagmite gets fired by the weapon... once you attach the blades and plug in the proper ammo type, the plasma will have different properties on impact. Both the shape and color of each rifle customization reflects what mode it's configured in. The colors and pallet configurations are:

 

1. Simple Rifle: White - N/A

2. Water Rifle: Cerulean - Left, Right

3. Fire Rifle: Red - Left, Right, Bottom

4. Moss Rifle: Green - Left, Right, Top

5. Gas Rifle: Purple - Left, Right, Top, Bottom

6. Shock Rifle: Blue - Top, Bottom

7. Noise Rifle: Cyan - Top

8. Rope Rifle: Gold - Bottom

 

Here are screenshots of each rifle with its intended final appearance. I'm really happy with how this came out, and can't wait to see them firing the actual projectiles ^_^

 

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Great to see work continues on this front, and its actually very impressive, the amount and quality of things you are bringing in. I think I said it before, but I quite like the idea of a single main weapon that adapts itself, changes, and provides you with most of the gameplay mechanics you need. You will have a trusty "tool" and it will cut back considerably on having to model and animate several random guns you might come across in a setting like the one you are aiming for. It has much more of a megaman feel to it, of a hero that relies on something, rather than a faceless marine that will pick up any gun he comes accross and fire away. Im really impressed by your work and would love to be able to bring in new enemy characters and player weapons with the ease you show here. The rifle itself looks real good, reminds me of the pulse rifle in Aliens, whats not to like about that. Loving those gui screens on it.

As for the aesthetics in general, I wanna insist a bit on what we were talking about the other week. Even though its tempting to try and recriate a bit of a Deus-ex feel, with the high tech stuff and shiny metal world, I still believe that TDM's engine, with the tools we have today, would be much more of a fit with a "low key", future-gone-bad kind of scenario. Something that goes for a Escape from New York, Johnny Mnemonic, Shadowrun, or a Blade Runner look and feel, with rund down, post-capitalism hellish urban-landscapes and that 80s scifi vibe. Why? Because its a much more believeable environment in terms of sneaking gameplay and the minimalistic aproach to design and features we have here. Even though its the future, things have decayed so much that it becomes reasonable that this is a place you can hide in the shadows and disappear. A place where its always night and dark, most of the streets are abandoned, its dangerous to walk around. Its not this ultra high tech world where we would expect to face a cctv camera on every corner that can instantly scan your dna and electric signature, and big brother is everywhere and no one can go unnoticed because the tech makes it impossible. But again, this is your mod, you go nuts, will be interesting to see what you come up with.

Edited by RPGista
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Great to see work continues on this front, and its actually very impressive, the amount and quality of things you are bringing in. I think I said it before, but I quite like the idea of a single main weapon that adapts itself, changes, and provides you with most of the gameplay mechanics you need. You will have a trusty "tool" and it will cut back considerably on having to model and animate several random guns you might come across in a setting like the one you are aiming for. It has much more of a megaman feel to it, of a hero that relies on something, rather than a faceless marine that will pick up any gun he comes accross and fire away. Im really impressed by your work and would love to be able to bring in new enemy characters and player weapons with the ease you show here. The rifle itself looks real good, reminds me of the pulse rifle in Aliens, whats not to like about that. Loving those gui screens on it.

 

As for the aesthetics in general, I wanna insist a bit on what we were talking about the other week. Even though its tempting to try and recriate a bit of a Deus-ex feel, with the high tech stuff and shiny metal world, I still believe that TDM's engine, with the tools we have today, would be much more of a fit with a "low key", future-gone-bad kind of scenario. Something that goes for a Escape from New York, Johnny Mnemonic, Shadowrun, or a Blade Runner look and feel, with rund down, post-capitalism hellish urban-landscapes and that 80s scifi vibe. Why? Because its a much more believeable environment in terms of sneaking gameplay and the minimalistic aproach to design and features we have here. Even though its the future, things have decayed so much that it becomes reasonable that this is a place you can hide in the shadows and disappear. A place where its always night and dark, most of the streets are abandoned, its dangerous to walk around. Its not this ultra high tech world where we would expect to face a cctv camera on every corner that can instantly scan your dna and electric signature, and big brother is everywhere and no one can go unnoticed because the tech makes it impossible. But again, this is your mod, you go nuts, will be interesting to see what you come up with.

 

Thank you very much and I'm glad you like it so far! The model is of course taken from Xonotic, but I did the porting plus animations and all design variations. It perfectly encompasses the design I want: One base weapon which can be configured to shoot different types of projectiles... which aren't all aimed at dealing damage, but can have various effects on the world. I probably wouldn't have went for this model if vanilla TDM didn't already have all those different arrow types, to which I am simply adapting new assets (for now).

 

The direction you're describing is exactly what I plan to do. The first DeusEx game wasn't a highly futuristic world either: There is advanced technology like robots and hologram screens, but the place is rather desolate with mixes between new and old technology. I wish to capture this environment too: A world where technology has moved on, but at the same time has this 1970's feel to it.

 

The implied backstory aims to emphasize on one aspect found in both DeusEx and sadly real life today: The risks and effects of rising government oppression, in a world torn by conflict from which powerful groups aim to profit. Obviously it won't be based on the same idea as DX where the government released a virus only they had the cure for, since there are far more realistic and palpable ways in which the same outcome is being reached. I want mine to be more at home, based on things like fear of extremism or the whole "I'm offended, something must be done" trend in society.

 

The player is put in the position of a hero hunted down by authority (or soon to be). They're based on the Umbra class, which in the default character set are a present or former government organization (depending on which point in time the FM is based). The base plot is that the Umbra betray the government upon discovering its corruption and join the people.

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I like the tone of the story. I think there are possibilities for some creativity as well. High tech armor is probably gonna be immune to gas (breathing system). Certainly impossible to KO with a club. They would probably pick up sound much better with their helmet sensors and whatnot, and would be able to see in the dark with infra-red. So, future Garrett would need to loose the wooden shoes, wear special gear, so maybe sound is not as much of a problem as it is visual clues, in terms of sneaking. He cant really rely solely on shadows (sensors can see in the dark, pick up heat signatures, etc), so maybe the player would need a cloak like the Predator's or Ghost in the Shell or something (theres a working one for a AvP doom3 mod (though I think its just the visuals, it doenst actually have an impact on AI)). Anyway, things that technology would change in the gameplay as we know it from thief/tdm.

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I like the tone of the story. I think there are possibilities for some creativity as well. High tech armor is probably gonna be immune to gas (breathing system). Certainly impossible to KO with a club. They would probably pick up sound much better with their helmet sensors and whatnot, and would be able to see in the dark with infra-red. So, future Garrett would need to loose the wooden shoes, wear special gear, so maybe sound is not as much of a problem as it is visual clues, in terms of sneaking. He cant really rely solely on shadows (sensors can see in the dark, pick up heat signatures, etc), so maybe the player would need a cloak like the Predator's or Ghost in the Shell or something (theres a working one for a AvP doom3 mod (though I think its just the visuals, it doenst actually have an impact on AI)). Anyway, things that technology would change in the gameplay as we know it from thief/tdm.

 

I might attempt some of those ideas using special items, but that's for much later in any case. I also plan to have terminals where you can upgrade the rifles as well as the character, since TDMU will be aimed slightly more at longer campaigns than single missions. One thing I'll definitely want are robots who can spot you in the dark, so your lightgem doesn't reduce your visibility to them... they would of course be a tougher enemy who's placement shouldn't be abused.

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New HUD design based on the Luma / Luminos panels and icons from Xonotic. It's far from perfect but it will do for a while. The icon at the top is my replacement of choice for the lightgem, which uses a more accurate material compared to vanilla (indicates all light-levels)... above it are the health and oxygen indicator bars, they're hidden when unneeded (0% / 100%) and only shown here as a test.

 

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Hey, that is cool! From those shots the tdm makeover/TC is visually pretty much complete. Noticed the little icons to symbolize the different projectile types, nice. I think most huds tend to have all the info on the botton, so the lightgem at the top would need some getting used to. Maybe test it at the botton as well, see what works better for you. Again, fantastic work, you are probably the only person today, as far as I know, doing work on so many fronts at the same time with the engine - new characters, new weapons mechanics, new hud GUIs. Thats insanely cool. Hope you are taking this to other forums, like the Xonotic community (do they have one, I wasnt familiar with the game). Its been very quiet around here, a lot of crickets. Just the usual suspects posting. So it would be nice to spread the word a little bit.

Edited by RPGista
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Also, and Im sure youve thought about that, but what about other Doom3 open mods? I bet theres a lot of stuff out there that would be interesting for you to bring in from mods like Arx, Blade of yatuja, Prometheus, etc. Like Gui tricks, or some AI behaviour, or a weapon script.... Do you think that would be possible, to get some collaboration going with a few of them? That would be pretty nice too.

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Hey, that is cool! From those shots the tdm makeover/TC is visually pretty much complete. Noticed the little icons to symbolize the different projectile types, nice. I think most huds tend to have all the info on the botton, so the lightgem at the top would need some getting used to. Maybe test it at the botton as well, see what works better for you. Again, fantastic work, you are probably the only person today, as far as I know, doing work on so many fronts at the same time with the engine - new characters, new weapons mechanics, new hud GUIs. Thats insanely cool. Hope you are taking this to other forums, like the Xonotic community (do they have one, I wasnt familiar with the game). Its been very quiet around here, a lot of crickets. Just the usual suspects posting. So it would be nice to spread the word a little bit.

 

I tried keeping the lightgem at the bottom, didn't like how it looked... thought it would be fun to actually change something and move it at the top, such that it feels a bit like looking in a car's rear-view mirror. The weapon icons are from the Luma / Luminos HUD designs in Xonotic, same as the backgrounds... I figured using those symbols would look nice too and I was right.

 

Even if I'm very much porting existing assets, it's a lot of work. I've been at this for at least 5 days non-stop. I'm pushing hard now to finish what I had planned for the near future, as I do have other projects to get back to working on. My goal was to be prepare the mod for porting one of my maps from Xonotic and eventually turning it into its showcase mission... more on that at the right time :)

 

Also, and Im sure youve thought about that, but what about other Doom3 open mods? I bet theres a lot of stuff out there that would be interesting for you to bring in from mods like Arx, Blade of yatuja, Prometheus, etc. Like Gui tricks, or some AI behaviour, or a weapon script.... Do you think that would be possible, to get some collaboration going with a few of them? That would be pretty nice too.

 

I do believe a few other Doom 3 mods were suggested. I haven't looked at those yet but might later. For now I'm porting stuff from Xonotic or OpenGameArt which I find easier overall.

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  • 2 years later...

I've just found this topic by accident by looking for information on how the lines of code regarding weapons function in TDM* and I figured I could give some advices regarding world-building and writing if you're interested, MirceaKitsune :)

*for the moment after exploring the Dhewm3 wiki I'm getting a vague understanding about how it all works, the .def and .script files etc, but I don't find where these files are located in the TDM pak files and the function of a lot of lines remain mysterious for lack of commentaries, I found no information about that in the Dark Radiant wiki... is there a tutorial somewhere listing the functions of all the lines of code in the .def and .script weapon files ?

 

On 10/3/2018 at 3:07 PM, MirceaKitsune said:

The direction you're describing is exactly what I plan to do. The first DeusEx game wasn't a highly futuristic world either: There is advanced technology like robots and hologram screens, but the place is rather desolate with mixes between new and old technology. I wish to capture this environment too: A world where technology has moved on, but at the same time has this 1970's feel to it.

One important thing to do if you want to make your universe and story timeless is to put it openly in an alternate universe, by using the usual "Year X after the Big World-Changing Catastrophe" chronological dating trick: it will allow you to include anything you want in the universe of your game, including anything concerning technology, objects, etc without risking it to become irrelevant or dated as real years pass in real life.

This way, your universe is like in a self-contained box isolated from the real life and the "real future" anyone will experience in the following years from today. It's a basic story/world-building trick, but it's a must.

Of course, to justify that technology in your fictitious universe has reached such a high point after a huge cataclysm that sent the world back to a Middle-Age level of technology, your plot/story inside your universe will take place several hundred years after that cataclysm. So, it's "Xth Century after the Big World-Changing Catastrophe", to be precise :)

In passing, if you like 1970's aesthetic and music, I suggest you listen to this, from Shawn Lee:

Most of his music have that 1970's thriller movie vibe with repetitive piano and violin, cool bass lines, wah-wah effects, the whole stuff.😍

 

 

On 2/10/2018 at 10:23 PM, MirceaKitsune said:
  • Umbra:
  1. Description: The Umbra was created as a secret government agency, typically specialized in top level espionage and assassination missions. Upon discovering evidence of government corruption, members of the faction slowly rebelled. Today only a few Umbra exist, hiding in the shadows and plotting to take down the government.
  2. Alliance: Pro-government (if the action takes place in the past) or anti-government (if the action takes place in the future). If the action takes place during the time of the revelations, the Umbra betray the government and change alliance during the mission. Neutral toward Draconi, may be persuaded to form an alliance. The player is part of this faction, all Umbra are the player's colleagues.
     

 

Depending on if you want your universe to have a realistic tone or a more "fantasy" one, you should change the name if you go for a realistic tone: in real life, intelligence services use bland names, often in the form of an acronym or an initialism.
For instance, the CIA's department in charge of assassinations and any clandestine action requiring the use of violence is the S.A.D, for Special Activities Division. In france, the name of the section of the DGSE (= french CIA) in charge of that kind of work is the D.O., for Division of Operations, after having been called "S.A." for Service Action until the 1990s and since the 1970s if I remember correctly.

Same thing for the name of the specific military units employed for these tasks, in france it is called "(the) alpha cell", which was an open secret for anyone that is a bit learned about any things military but was suddenly discovered by the general public after a shitty president, françois hollande, told of their existence to two journalists just to look "badass" and impress people, and then all the journalist were visibly shocked to learn that a government has to settle things in a permanent way sometimes, like these former nazi supplying terrorists with weapons as arms dealers in the 1950s as a way of getting a revenge against the french government for contributing to hitler's defeat during WW2... they had it comin'. :)

Anyway, about Umbra the fictitious secret government agency in your universe, if you aim for a realistic tone, I suggest to create instead an intelligence agency that is absolutely not secret and on the contrary openly known by the population, with a bland acronym for name, let's say ORIA for "Office for Research and Intelligence Analysis", whether your fictitious society is a republic such as pretty much every country now or instead a dictatorship: as paradoxical as it may seem, even in a dictatorship everyone know the name of the secret police because it is a necessity to keep the population afraid -the citizens need a name to be afraid of, and to be threatened with by the government.

Think about the KGB for instance, or, in Romania, the Securitate under Ceaucescu: even if it was a secret police, everyone knew its name and its existence, and even in the 1950's in Soviet Russia everyone knew that the Lubyanka is the name of the building where the KGB operated and where people were sent to disappear if they didn't obey or were "suspicious".
 

Also, whether it's the intelligence service of a republic or of a dictatorship, the thing that is truly secret is always its inner departments/offices/sections, and a lot of time it's often just an open secret as I mentioned.
Inside your fictitious intelligence service, there should not be "a special unit specialised in espionage and assassinations": in real life, every intel service is separated in specialized departments having each one its specific task and isolated from every other one (a basic way to avoid getting your whole organization going to shit if it was infiltrated by a rival intelligence service).

Which means that:

- the unit dedicated to killing people and blowing up stuff will only know and be told "go there and kill this one" or "go there and make a sound-and-light show of this hidden weapons depot there", but never more than that, again as a security measure (OpSec, operational security) in case there is someone of them taken prisoner or decides to betray.

- that unit will often have no official existence (like the "alpha cell/alpha commando" I mentioned: you can be sure this name won't appear on the paycheck of its members, they'll just get called as any other agent by your intelligence service's accountants and nowhere in its Organizational Chart will this kind of unit will be named as such, it's usually an oral name, never written down anywhere), and will only be a part of a department such as "The Special Division Tasked With Planning Actions", without any contact with the other departments (again, security: the whole "oh noes, the enemy has stolen the List of all them agentz and made it public this is such an original plot for every so-called spy movie since the last 25 years !!!" doesn't happen in real life).

- that department which controls this unit is just one among other departments in your intelligence service, where there are a department tasked with spying (recruiting agents, managing a network of spies which means paying them, keeping notes of the information they provide, making sure they really work for you and that they don't tell you bullshit, etc) and only with spying, another department tasked with building spy gadgets and only that task (GPS beacons disguised as a shoe sole that will be placed in the shoe of such person by a unit from another department that is specialized in clandestine operations that do not involve killing and blowing stuff up), etc.

That separation in several services to maintain security is also the reason why every country has 2 intelligence services (15 or more if you're the USA, but that's not the subject 😛) :

- one "internal intelligence service" in charge of everything that happens inside the country, is usually "civilian", has only police powers and spends its time investigating stuff and gathering information on various groups threatening the society from within and what are their projects/actions, which includes spying on and trying to infiltrate organized crime (think: FBI)

- and one "external intelligence service" in charge of every threat happening outside the country (think: CIA), usually half-"civilian" half-"military", that spends its time spying outside the country, getting caught spying, killing innocent people who have discovered that agency's involvement in human experimentation for stupid mind-control projects that couldn't work anyway, testing toxic substances on the population of a remote french village or on the population of the USA because it's not like if they have a Constitution to respect or anything, and has a couple of units specialized in killing and blowing stuff up. 😛

But not more than a couple of these units: one important thing to know is that an intel service, unless it also serve as a secret police (in such case it will also be tasked with punishing the average citizen for not being doing docile or just being suspect of wrongthink) or has way too much budget and starts believing in "mind-control" and tries testing stupid ideas to achieve this, is primarily tasked with spying, just that.
That is, gathering information, whether it is by planting spies somewhere (the glamorous movie-like aspect) or by just paying people to know stuff (the real, mundane day-to-day inglorious that's-not-gonna-make-a-good-action-movie functioning of an intelligence service everywhere, even in a dictatorship).

An intelligence service is an institution just like the State' postal service, the State's department of transportation and motor vehicles in charge of delivering driving licenses, the State's military or the State's police: an institution rarely rebels against its own government, just because, well, it's the government and its politicians that pay its member's wages... if you want a true story, after the spying powers of the internal french intelligence service (the DGSI, formerly called the DST) were expended to allow them to more easily struggle against terrorists, they suddenly had their funding seriously diminished.
Why ? Well, with these new spying powers they had got, they kept bumping on cases of governmental corruption during their investigations on terrorism funding, as a side discovery while following such or such lead... so the politicians neutralized them as much as they could, re-organized some services to prevent them looking into incriminating stuff, halved their budget, etc, and then some massive terrorist attacks occurred a couple of years later.

The agents of that intelligence service were seriously pissed, some were so disgusted that they revealed that information to anyone that could relay it, and no TV or paper journalist ever talked about it.
That's all: no rebellion, no "let's bring that government down", nothing. Because the head of the intelligence service is a civil servant / functionary whom wage is payed by the State, and because everyone at each echelon of the hierarchy is more concerned about having a good career than by doing anything, society be damned.
And even if they were so pissed that they wanted to put the whole government down, they can't: they have families to feed, rents to pay, etc, so they have nothing to gain and much to lose should they put the political system down -who knows what would replace it ?.

In a dictatorship, an intelligence service will be even less inclined to act against the government because 1) the agents often share the same ideology (a KGB agent is as much communist as the Dear Leader), 2) given how hated they are by the population that the agents or their predecessors have been bullying since all these decades, they just don't think it's a good idea to suddenly support The People to try to pass as the heroes.

It's only in very specific cases such as for instance in Romania where at some point the Securitate ended up that fed up with Ceaucescu, and, very very certainly, knew that so much citizen were fed up with him too, that a whole intelligence service and not a few angry agents can decide to rebel against a government that pay their wages and provide them with a career and some nice social advantages: the Securitate finally decided to revolt because every element among a long list showed that it was the most rational choice.

That's why no intelligence service ever rebels against its government or betray its politicians, so, for the plot of your story that will serve to introduce people to your universe, and again if you want it to have a realistic tone instead of a fantasy tone: only the player character decides that enough is enough and starts going rogue, supported on the margin by a few colleagues that would (or just could) provide only the bare minimum to help.
Some money but not much, a former safe house that is unoccupied at the moment, some ammo miraculously lost from the armory, etc, but not more, no support apart these crumbles that they painfully managed to make at the player character's disposal.

As for the player character's motivation, the massive reason why that agent finally decided to rebel, see what follows just below ;)

 

On 10/3/2018 at 3:07 PM, MirceaKitsune said:

The player is put in the position of a hero hunted down by authority (or soon to be). They're based on the Umbra class, which in the default character set are a present or former government organization (depending on which point in time the FM is based). The base plot is that the Umbra betray the government upon discovering its corruption and join the people.

One suggestion regarding your story, relying on the groups you have detailed (specifically, the Gak or Draconi): during the first mission of your game, the Umbra intel service (I'm keeping this name for clarity's sake -oh, unintended pun, eheh) sends the player character in a building/research center/whatever belonging to that weird organization called Transgenic Security to find information on what they're doing, because Umbra has gathered a lot of information that makes its director think, once combined, that some very shady stuff is happening.

At that point of your story, no one knows the Gak or Draconi, neither the characters nor the player. The player character discovers suspicious stuff, notably documents (emails, etc) revealing that the government is involved in schemes (corruption) with Transgenic Security. Nothing more: no discovery of the Gak or Draconi, nothing.

On mission 2, the player character is send on another mission, not related to Transgenic Security, let's say in another country or in the desert, sneaking (or breaking, depending on how the player wants to play) into the base of terrorists to find information.
There, the player character ends up discovering (or facing, if the players preferred to go all guns blazing) the Gak or the Draconi. Powerful beings genetically engineered, which is a Great Taboo in your fictitious society, just as today (judeo-christian beliefs firmly rooted in the society, genetic modification Is Teh Evilz, etc).

The player character succeeds in accomplishing the mission, that was unrelated to the Gak or the Draconi's presence, keep that in mind, and passes on the unbelievable information regarding the presence of these weird and superhuman creatures, not knowing what they are, if they come from somewhere in the galaxy or if they are engineered through human researches.

Mission 3 begins with the player character sent on another unrelated mission, tasked with accomplishing an objective unrelated to Transgenic Security and the Gak or the Draconi.
The player character doesn't face or see them this time amongst the local NPCs, but suddenly discovers that Transgenic Security is responsible for the Gak or the Draconi's creation, is shocked, and even more shocked to learn that the government not only knows but has authorized research on genetic engineering in spite of the Great Taboo that this is, in exchange of a lot of money from Transgenic Security and the funding of the next political campaign and the recruitment of the president's cousin on their board of administration.

At the end of the mission, the player character is forced to escape as Gak or Draconi troops converge in the location of the mission and have come to kill him/her, and understands that the government knows that he/she knows.
Enough is enough: the Great Taboo is broken, genetic research is Teh Great Evilz, the government is corrupted AND they want the player character dead, so with all of this, the character is so pushed over the edge that the only solution is to go rogue and live in clandestinity with the help of the few colleagues that know the truth and have warned the player character about the arrival of the Gak or the Draconi.

From now on, the player character has only one objective: to bring the government down, a long-term objective that will very slowly be on the verge of getting done through a lot of fan-made missions :) ;)

 

On 2/10/2018 at 10:23 PM, MirceaKitsune said:
  • Police:
  1. Description: The city police force, occasionally hired as guards by government agencies in areas of special interest. Responds to the government, by which it is tasked to maintain public order and enforce curfew hours.
  2. Alliance: Strongly pro-government. Sides with or against the Umbra and player based on their stance toward the government (see above). Will always attack Draconi, except for traitors who choose to serve the government. Some local police forces may rarely desert against the government upon proof of corruption.
  3. Models: Ignis, Seraphina
  4. Color: Blue


If the tone you want to obtain leans toward realistic rather than fantasy, the police force should always side with Umbra but always side against the player character of course, and always attack Draconi / Gak because their existence is so unfathomable due to the Great Taboo that is genetic research that, well, the average police officer seeing Draconi / Gak would believe they are monsters and, as such, threats.

Regarding the formulation, one little detail: the police cannot be "hired as guard" by government agencies, since the police itself is a government agency, so any gov agency just receive protection from the police as the government orders the police to protect such or such gov agency when the need arise.

 

On 2/10/2018 at 10:23 PM, MirceaKitsune said:
  • Terminus Troopers:
  1. Description: The Terminus project is the result of a government experiment, who's aim was creating an army of superhuman soldiers. Their very existence is a secret and known only by a select few. They are tasked to guard secret government bases and objectives, as well as carrying out secret military operations and territorial occupations. Due to high expenses and the medical implications of the procedure, relatively few Terminus troopers exist.
  2. Alliance: Strictly pro-government. Sides with or against the Umbra and player based on their stance toward the government (see above). Will always attack Draconi, except for traitors who choose to serve the government. Always aids the police, with the exception of police forces that desert against the government.
  3. Models: Terminus, Termina
  4. Color: Red


The idea of creating an army of superhuman soldiers make the tone of your story and universe lean more toward the "fantasy" than toward the "realistic" side, that's a choice as valid as the other (even if a bit stereotypical), I'm just pointing the effect that this idea has on the general tone ;)

 

On 2/10/2018 at 10:23 PM, MirceaKitsune said:
  • Transgenic Security:
  1. Description: Transgenic Security is the largest corporation dealing in genetic engineering. They produce semi-sapient creatures with high physical strength, which are sold to other groups who use them as security guards or to establish private armies. The company isn't seen well by the government and operates at the limit of legality, being the favorite choice of shadowy organizations in need of mercenaries thanks to lax legal requirements and cheap prices. Their only successful creature remains the Gak, after the company's failure to produce a stable Draconi (see below). They are the competitor of Cerulean Guard, although they typically serve poor and / or unlawful groups in contrast.
  2. Alliance: Independent, each group serves the faction it was hired by. If ever given freedom of choice, they are most likely to side with the Draconi.
  3. Models: Gak
  4. Color: Lime


To make the government's corruption problem much more important and "motivating" for the player character to choose to rebel, because embezzlement of taxpayers' money would not be scandalous enough for an intelligence agency (they actually are guilty of that themselves, in some countries), the fact that Transgenic Security isn't seen well by the government should be changed and the government should see them as "just another company" officially while being secretly corrupted by them, again this suggestion is only valid if you choose to go for a realistic tone instead of a fantasy one :)

 

On 2/10/2018 at 10:23 PM, MirceaKitsune said:
  • Draconi:
  1. Description: The Draconi were genetically engineered by Transgenic Security, and intended as a newer and improved version of the Gak. Due to their higher sapience and increased intelligence, the Draconi soon realized they're being used as slave guards by the humans, and decided to rebel and form their own faction. Upon taking over several Transgenic Security laboratories, Draconi have been able to continue their own production and create improved versions of themselves. The race has vowed revenge against both Transgenic Security and the government, although they harbor no ill intent toward ordinary civilians and groups that don't aid the government. Draconi are considered a public safety hazard and are actively hunted down by police, who are often overpowered by the creatures and unable to face them. Draconi usually live in poorer parts of the city, or the sewers and obscure alleys around the richer parts.
  2. Alliance: Anti-government, will also attack all police. Neutral toward other factions, will usually not attack unless provoked. Occasionally makes alliances with other anti-government groups, and may be persuaded to join the Umbra and player in the right conditions. On rare occasions, some Draconi may betray the group and work as special forces for the government (alongside Terminus).
  3. Models: Draconi
  4. Color: Gold

Instead of taking over Transgenic Security's labs to use them, the Draconi should have raided these labs to get some equipment, captures a few high-level scientists and keep them hostages while having blown up the labs to lead everyone to believe these scientists are dead, blown to pieces by the explosion, and established a clandestine base in, say, an isolated hospital, still in working condition and operating patients daily, to justify the fact that they can still pay the electricity bills as they need a power source for their equipment.

They would have dig the equivalent of an underground bunker under the hospital, using the old service tunnels as a base from which to dig, a bunker where they hide all the equipment needed to make more of them by cloning, hoping to grow in enough numbers to one day get their revenge against the government, and in the meantime they can employ the player character for missions whom aim is to obtain new scientists via kidnapping, steal more efficient cloning equipment, steal valuable stuff that would be resold to get more money to clone more Draconi or start buying weapons, etc.


I hope this helps :)

Edited by Cecil of Cynope
aerating some walls of text, and a new edit correcting a typo altering the meaning of a phrase, "what" instead of "that"
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  • 4 months later...

I keep remembering this project and coming back to it every now and then. Right now I feel rather horrible about myself over it: 3 years since I've done anything new, even posting again in this thread. I hoped of having something done and ready by now! I know it's because I've been busy with other things including for vanilla TDM, but I still want this to happen and it should happen. I'm very happy with what I managed to get done last time, it just needs a bit of fixing then expanded upon accordingly.

https://gitlab.com/darkmodule/darkmodule/-/tree/master

I think it's time I do the right thing and understand I'm likely not going to get this done on my own as I'd have once hoped. Now that I got a reminder to get off my butt and revisit this thread, I should do so by asking: Are any other content creator here in the TDM community willing to jump on board this too and also contribute to TheDarkModule? If yes I can establish some development guidelines with what should and shouldn't be done, plus a roadmap of what's most needed next in order of priority so it can actually start being used to create full FM's, not just something to put in a glass case and stare at. I'm used to working alone but that isn't something I can go with here, I'm ruining it both for myself and others who wanted this: If our vision is the same I should let others help so we can finish the rest based on the solid basis I already put together and will still contribute my own thing to.

So please take a look at the screenshots above and what I last achieved. Do you feel that's going to go somewhere you like, do you wish to create or play FM's with those assets, do you like it enough to contribute the new assets needed to plug the remaining holes? If so then reply here or in PM or however you feel comfortable, and if I have enough support I'll adjust the Gitlab repository to properly be a team project.

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