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[Resolved] Allow mantling while carrying a body


Daft Mugi

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Allowing mantle while carrying a body was originally proposed by Bikerdude one year ago (January 2022).
https://bugs.thedarkmod.com/view.php?id=5892

I agreed with him, since that is how Thief 1 & 2 work.

I've submitted patches, and due to feedback, I've submitted three patches each with a different behavior, starting in August 2022 (5892) :

  1. (Patch v1) Always enable mantling while carrying a body.
  2. (Patch v2) Only enable mantling while carrying a body if "pm_mantle_while_shouldering" cvar is set. This is already available in 2.11 beta 7.
  3. (Patch v3) Restrict mantling at the waist. There is no agreement about how this should work yet.
  • I've spent over 12 hours of work and testing on (v3) so far, so it would be incredibly discouraging if a final decision is not made between versions (v1), (v2), or (v3) for 2.11.

Personally, I think patch (v1) always enable mantling while carry a body is best. This matches Thief 1 & 2 and does not require a cvar. If (v3) is chosen, the rules need to be decided.

Could you all please answer the following questions?

(Please copy and paste the questions below when answering.)

Do we really need to restrict mantling while shouldering at all?

Is there a mission with a mantle trap? If so, which mission?

If we restrict the player while shouldering, what should the rules be?
While shouldering, what's the tallest object that can be mantled?
While shouldering, should there be different object height requirements between crouched and standing?
While shouldering, can the player mantle during a fall or jump across to another ledge?
While shouldering, what mantle types are allowed out of: push, pushNonCrouch, pull, pullFast, hang?
(Are there other rules to consider?)

Resolved

Patch v3 is included in 2.12 dev builds, starting with dev16778-10275, which is open to feedback during the dev release cycle.

pm_mantle_while_shouldering cvar.

pm_mantle_while_shouldering, default: 1
Which restriction for mantle while shouldering?
  0 --- no mantling while shouldering a body (TDM original)
  1 --- restricted mantling while shouldering a body
  2 --- unrestricted mantling while shouldering a body (Cheat Mode)

pm_mantle_maxShoulderingObstacleHeight cvar.

pm_mantle_maxShoulderingObstacleHeight, default: 41
The maximum height of obstacles allowed for a shouldering body mantle
Note that mantling above eye level is disabled regardless of this value
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  • Daft Mugi changed the title to Allow mantling while carrying a body
12 minutes ago, peter_spy said:

If I may, I don't like the somewhat aggressive way of pushing for changes, especially in core mechanics, which seems to come from just one person's idiosyncrasies. And it's not the first topic I see like that in the last few days.

Well, I wouldn't put it that harshly, but changing core-mechanics is definitely not for the beta-phase.

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12 hours ago, Daft Mugi said:

Is there a mission with a mantle trap? If so, which mission?

 

Not sure if I understand correctly, but at least Volta 2 and HHVF include sequences where the player has to carry a body and changing the mantling behaviour would effect the intended gameplay. There are most probably more missions with that mechanic but I can't recall ATM.

However, the T1/2 behaviour as a default in TDM would have made my mission design in HHVF much easier, because I had to desgin a certain area around the fact that the behaviour in question is missing. 🤪

Otherwise, though, have to agree with Stifu on your first question; it would probably change things in too many missions now. That would probably require rough and roughest interventions in the geometry. A non-trivial task nobody is willing to take over.

Edited by JackFarmer
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7 hours ago, peter_spy said:

If I may, I don't like the somewhat aggressive way of pushing for changes, especially in core mechanics, which seems to come from just one person's idiosyncrasies. And it's not the first topic I see like that in the last few days.

TBH, I've noticed that over the last months really.

Nothing bad with having ideas for improvements, but, I've seen loads of things which aren't really improvements, but rather quick not thoroughly thought through ideas. Let's just say that those have become quite inflationary recently.

Not saying that is the case here, but, @STiFU raises some great points. I don't think this would add anything to the mod. Apart from potentially breaking missions, to me, it makes perfect sense that you're not able to climb higher obstacles with a 100 kilo (adding the armor etc.) body over your shoulder...

Let's put it like this: I rather think FM authors should take care that there are reasonably enough spots to hide a body, rather than the playable character being able to easily climb ladders with a 100 kilo plus body on his shoulder. I think that's more immersive.

Edited by chakkman
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I don't think restricting mantling while carrying a body is such a big deal from a difficulty standpoint. It just makes the game feel less arcady. Thief Deadly Shadows didn't allow it and I didn't mind. It would look ridiculous. And it will look silly if there are plans to allow third person camera in The Dark Mod too. So mantling and jumping while carrying a body is useless.

"I really perceive that vanity about which most men merely prate — the vanity of the human or temporal life. I live continually in a reverie of the future. I have no faith in human perfectibility. I think that human exertion will have no appreciable effect upon humanity. Man is now only more active — not more happy — nor more wise, than he was 6000 years ago. The result will never vary — and to suppose that it will, is to suppose that the foregone man has lived in vain — that the foregone time is but the rudiment of the future — that the myriads who have perished have not been upon equal footing with ourselves — nor are we with our posterity. I cannot agree to lose sight of man the individual, in man the mass."...

- 2 July 1844 letter to James Russell Lowell from Edgar Allan Poe.

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1 hour ago, chakkman said:

Nothing bad with having ideas for improvements, but, I've seen loads of things which aren't really improvements, but rather quick not thoroughly thought through ideas. Let's just say that those have become quite inflationary recently.

I think I get what you mean; just because you can add 100 more arrow types to the game, it doesn't mean you should... Although you can always mod the base game and let people download it. Same with this kind of thing.

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9 hours ago, peter_spy said:

If I may, I don't like the somewhat aggressive way of pushing for changes, especially in core mechanics, which seems to come from just one person's idiosyncrasies. And it's not the first topic I see like that in the last few days.

I'm an outside developer who saw this bug tracker and submitted a patch. I was given consent to submit more patches.

I'm collecting more information, so I can better understand the problem I'm solving.

What's "aggressive" about that?

Edited by Daft Mugi
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Quote

I've spent over 12 hours of work and testing on (v3) so far, so it would be incredibly discouraging if a final decision is not made between versions (v1), (v2), or (v3) for 2.11.

This is basically "do include my work ASAP because I worked so hard, or else *sulk*".

This is similar case: https://forums.thedarkmod.com/index.php?/topic/21679-beta-testing-211/page/10/#comment-482352

This is neither a commercial product, nor a phishing email. That sense of rush and pressure is artificial. These releases typically do take long, and even then, there are often many things broken by mistake or omission. Often there aren't enough people to test stuff, or they're not competent enough, etc, etc. There's little point in hurry.

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13 hours ago, Daft Mugi said:

I'm an outside developer who saw this bug tracker and submitted a patch. I was given consent to submit more patches.

I'm collecting more information, so I can better understand the problem I'm solving.

What's "aggressive" about that?

Of course, all your contributions are welcome. The thing about this specific feature you are implementing is that there was no universal agreement about it within the team to begin with. Just because something is listed on the bugtracker, doesn't mean it is an accepted featurerequest. Anyone can write anything to the backtracker. Furthermore, your patch changes core mechanics in a significant way that have to be thorougly tested not only for 12 hours by you, but by a whole testing community for a week at least, and @JackFarmer already described two maps that would soft-break by this feature. Lastly, you want it to be included now, i.e., at the end of beta phase. Our current beta build is a release candidate, which means that, if no further issues are found, it will be released as is. I am afraid, it is simply too late. You can of course just offer a modded 2.11 with your change included.

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My opinion as a mapper.

When I plan a mission, I have to take into account what exactly a player could potentially do (and not do). It's possible a map is built around the fact that you can carry bodies only along certain routes. So a detail like this is pretty important in my opinion, and should not just be changed without careful consideration.

@Daft MugiHaving said that, I appreciate the work you put into this. Please don't let yourself be discouraged from contributing in the future.

Edited by Baal
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The sooner this community switches from "realistic" to" reasonable" the better. Rope arrows, remember?

Again, what is the worst that could happen if (waist height - reasonable) mantling and going up/down a ladder (reasonable) while carrying a body at snail's pace (reasonable) is allowed?

Edited by snatcher

TDM Modpack 4.0

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If anything, it's reasonable not to change the player character move set, because it has been nailed down years ago, and people have been building maps around it. Unless you plan to meticulously replay all the maps in all possible playstyles, to make sure everything is ok, that's a poor idea. Having it as a mod and letting people try it out might be a better option.

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My answer to my question: a player takes a body to the river and throws it there. A mission objective later kicks in "Bring the body as evidence!" but the player is unable to take it out of the river.

Now what? Well, the mission fails and the player has learned the lesson.

What's the matter, really?

 

 

TDM Modpack 4.0

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36 minutes ago, snatcher said:

Again, what is the worst that could happen if (waist height - reasonable) mantling and going up/down a ladder (reasonable) while carrying a body at snail's pace (reasonable) is allowed?

Being able to carry a body up a ladder could potentially break existing missions. 

I am in favour of enabling mantling while carrying for limited heights, though. If you can get a body across something by dropping it, and picking it up from above, it seems convenient and realistic to me.

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7 minutes ago, snatcher said:

The player is responsible for his/her decisions and actions. Up to them if they pile up 10 bodies in the sewer or an attic.

What you basically described a post earlier is punishing the player for something they couldn't possibly know. That's awful level design.

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32 minutes ago, snatcher said:

 a player takes a body to the river and throws it there. A mission objective later kicks in "Bring the body as evidence!" but the player is unable to take it out of the river.

Now what?

That is a good example of the mapper having to consider what players could do. If the rules of the game make it possible that the body could somehow get out of reach, you should take that into account. 

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1 hour ago, Baal said:

That is a good example of the mapper having to consider what players could do. If the rules of the game make it possible that the body could somehow get out of reach, you should take that into account. 

That's exactly why there is resistance to changing "what the players could do".  No mapper can be expected to consider what players MIGHT be able to do in the future when the rules change.

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