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Some questions


Loginnerer
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I always play missions on their medium difficulty so I can enjoy the challenging stealth gameplay without having to search nooks and crannies for all loot. 
But this leaves me to wonder - besides objectives, am I missing out on some other increase in challenge because of sticking to medium difficulty, even though I have maxed the AI settings? - Answered: Whatever the mission author has set for differences in difficulty, but it is possible that guard awareness raises per difficulty level independently from mapper's settings.

Also, (enumerated)

1. Is there detailed information somewhere about all terrain types with how much noise they cause compared to each other? - Answered: The mission "Sound alert and Blackjack trainer" should give some understanding. 
2. Can you peek through keyholes, and if so - how? I might remember it wrong but one mission that I played allowed me to "lean forward" toward a keyhole to see through it. Was this a removed feature, or just mission specific? - Answered: Yes, it is mission-specific, implemented by author
3. Is there a secret on how to land / get down from a taller object more softly? I land while crouched and holding "creep" key, also try to slide down or descend by baby-steps whenever possible, but it's not always enough to not be heard.- Yes, I can always lower the AI hearing, but I think it adds a nice challenge except only for the dropping part, so figured I'd ask first. - Answered: Yes, you may be able to drop a readable document to where you intend to land.
4. Is noise masking a feature in any way? Meaning does a guard have a harder time hearing you when they are close to something that causes noise?
5. How long did it take for you to learn Dark Radiant enough to release your first mission?

Thank You all for the wonderful game and regular pieces of experiences.

Edited by Loginnerer
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As far as I'm aware, changes in difficulty are purely up to the mission author.  TDM itself doesn't adjust anything automatically.

As for your other questions, I'll answer the ones I know something about.  Others can chime in or correct anything that's wrong.

  1. pass
  2. Peeking through keyholes is a mission-specific thing that the author needs to implement
  3. not sure you can do any more than what you are already doing - that's about all I ever do
  4. not that I'm aware of
  5. I learnt as I went along.  If you are thinking of trying it, I highly recommend Springheel's New mappers workshop.  If it wasn't for those, I probably wouldn't have started.  The modules he mentions in the tutorials are super handy for beginners.  Just try to build something yourself, and you gain confidence as you go along, then you can decide if you want to shoot for something to release.  My first FM took about 4 months, but that was working on it almost daily and it turned out a bit larger than I originally intended.  But that was a result of gaining confidence as I went.  I was a total n00b as well - no previous experience at all with this kind of thing (not counting a Quake map I did like 25 years ago).
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20 hours ago, Loginnerer said:

3. Is there a secret on how to land / get down from a taller object more softly? I land while crouched and holding "creep" key, also try to slide down or descend by baby-steps whenever possible, but it's not always enough to not be heard.- Yes, I can always lower the AI hearing, but I think it adds a nice challenge except only for the dropping part, so figured I'd ask first.

I have seen @Klatremus use an interesting hack to solve this problem, which was to first drop a readable document (which seems to fall straight down and land silently) and then to drop down onto the document ... which then amazingly cushions the fall and makes it silent!

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20 hours ago, Loginnerer said:

I have heard that AI relights torches only on highest mission difficulty. Is that correct?

No, it has to be / must be set by the mission designer for each light and AI separately and can of course be activated for all difficulties. Plus, this is not possible for all types of lights.

20 hours ago, Loginnerer said:

Does mission difficulty stack anything on AI awareness? 

Or are the changes in mission difficulty only what the author sets them to be, and there isn't anything pre-determined by TDM itself?

I am pretty sure that longtime and sorely missed DM contributor grayman posted somewhere ca. five years ago, that AI awareness rises slightly with each difficulty level independently from the mapper's settings.

Edited by JackFarmer
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40 minutes ago, Araneidae said:

I have seen @Klatremus use an interesting hack to solve this problem, which was to first drop a readable document (which seems to fall straight down and land silently) and then to drop down onto the document ... which then amazingly cushions the fall and makes it silent!

That's genius. Thank You for this.

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6 hours ago, JackFarmer said:

I am pretty sure that longtime and sorely missed DM contributor grayman posted somewhere ca. five years ago, that AI awareness rises slightly with each difficulty level independently from the mapper's settings.

I vaguely remember stumbling across this in the code once. But now, for the life of me, I can't find it. Perhaps I'm remembering wrong - I'll keep hunting.

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10 hours ago, JackFarmer said:

I am pretty sure that longtime and sorely missed DM contributor grayman posted somewhere ca. five years ago, that AI awareness rises slightly with each difficulty level independently from the mapper's settings.

I don't remember which discussion it was (I have a bad memory), but, I think Obsttorte mentioned to me a few months ago that stuff like that is all up to the mapper.

It would be strange if there was a general raise in awareness between difficulty levels anyway, if you think about it. There's already a setting for general awareness, which is player defined, and, if the difficulty settings really affected awareness, then the player wouldn't be aware of it. I don't think it does. But, would be great if someone with more insight could confirm that.

Edited by chakkman
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10 hours ago, chakkman said:

It would be strange if there was a general raise in awareness between difficulty levels anyway, if you think about it. There's already a setting for general awareness, which is player defined, and, if the difficulty settings really affected awareness, then the player wouldn't be aware of it. I don't think it does. But, would be great if someone with more insight could confirm that.

I know what you mean; an automated awareness level increase/decrease depending on the difficulty level plus separate options to increase/decrease the awareness in the options makes no sense, but I could swear that grayman mentioned it somewhere, and as you can see from joebarnin's post above, he recalls that as well.

 

Edited by JackFarmer
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I've spent a couple of hours searching, but I haven't found anything in the code that adjusts awareness automatically, based on difficulty level. So, either my memory is faulty, or my code-scanning skills are bad. (Either way, not a good look for me 😮). But at this point, I have to withdraw what I said above (or as Ron Ziegler would have put it, my previous statement is inoperative). 

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I like how you are managing your topic!

On 9/23/2022 at 5:25 PM, Loginnerer said:

1. Is there detailed information somewhere about all terrain types with how much noise they cause compared to each other?

It must be defined somewhere for sure. I can look it up for you if your interested in code/numbers.

There probably is a more enjoyable way for you if you are up for some old school investigations: let me suggest the "mission" Sound Alert and Blackjack Trainer. See if you come to some conclusions on your own!

On 9/23/2022 at 5:25 PM, Loginnerer said:


4. Is noise masking a feature in any way? Meaning does a guard have a harder time hearing you when they are close to something that causes noise?

I would like to know too. Well, on a second thought I am not sure I want to know in case of a negative. I will keep pretending noise masks sound 🙂

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TDM Modpack v2.0 (20/11/2022) - Visit:

Snatcher's Workshop - Mods for The Dark Mod

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23 minutes ago, snatcher said:

I can look it up for you if your interested in code/numbers.

No need, but I appreciate it. I'll give that Trainer mission a go. Just wondered if it is already documented some place. It's the loudest-to-softest I'm interested in, and will probably gain that "feel" by just playing the game.

And I like the effort you have put into mods. Whistling and blowing out fires makes sense, but I just could not allow myself to make the game easier, so reverted back 😕

Edited by Loginnerer
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4 hours ago, Loginnerer said:

It's the loudest-to-softest I'm interested in, and will probably gain that "feel" by just playing the game.

You might also found the Sound Alert & Blackjack Training "mission" useful for this.

{ 0 | 🞵 } = funk_tastic

My missions:           Stand-alone                                                      Duncan Lynch series                              

                                      Down and Out on Newford Road              the Factory Heist

                                                                                                  A House Call

                              

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On 9/23/2022 at 8:25 AM, Loginnerer said:

1. Is there detailed information somewhere about all terrain types with how much noise they cause compared to each other?

The numbers are in tdm_player_thief.def and tdm_propagated_sounds.def, which are in tdm_defs01.pk4. tdm_player_thief has a bunch of entries that start "sprS_". E.g.:

    "sprS_footstep_wood"                "footstep_default_walk:-3.6"
 

That means that the volume of a footstep on wood is defined in footstep_default_walk, adjusted -3.6 (dB?). In tdm_propagated_sounds, you'll find sprGS_footstep_default_walk

entityDef sprGS_footstep_default_walk
{
    "inherit" "atdm:propagated_sound_base"
    "vol" "42.6"
    "dur" "100"
    "alert_factor"    "0.35"   // AI can hear footsteps at a distance but don't react strongly to just one
    "alert_max"    "12"
    "editor_usage"    "Propagated footstep sounds from the player"
}
 

which has a volume ("vol") of 42.6. So presumably the game subtracts 3.6 from 42.6 to calculate how noisy the footstep is on wood. Other materials have other adjustments in tdm_player_thief. And of course there are other adjustments, for example based on the distance the sound travels to the AI.

So if you're interested, have a look at those files, especially tdm_player_thief.def and the sprS_ settings, which give you a indication of the relative volume changes from different surfaces.

Edit: I just realized some of this is discussed here: https://wiki.thedarkmod.com/index.php?title=Setting_up_Individual_Propagated_Sounds_and_Estimating_Volume

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