TTLG|Thief|Bioshock|System Shock|Deus Ex|Mobile
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 31

Thread: A Few Unrelated Questions

  1. #1
    New Member
    Registered: May 2017

    A Few Unrelated Questions

    Hey Everyone,

    I'm still working on my campaign and it's going great, I just have a few unrelated questions that I couldn't find the answer to, but that I think could be answered fairly easily by those in the know.

    1: Having read up on the various methods of creating stairs, I elected to use the method that involves creating several rectangular brushes beside one another and simply adjusting their heights to form stairs. They work fine for me as the player, and enemy guards are fine going down them, however I noticed that when they run up them, they seem to sink almost to their knees in the stairs, though they still ultimately make it to the top. I've played the Thief trilogy for countless hours, but I can't say that I've ever paid that much attention to how the guards look while running up stairs. Is this a problem in the way I've made the stairs or is it a quirk of the engine? It's not a major issue of course, it's just not ideal.

    2: I figured out how to make a sleeping guard, but not how to change his posture, so my sleeping guard sleeps flat on his face with his sword outstretched. How do I change his position?

    3: In one of my maps I put a pagan civilian in a prison and added a property to him that says "Flee: If Aware of AI/Player: TRUE". However, he doesn't flee and tries to engage me as though he had a weapon to do so. I can't figure out what I'm missing here.

    4: Is there a way to select everything in a map when editing? Or a way to click and drag and select things?

    5: This is more of an opinion question, but I always felt that you should never be allowed to knock anyone out on Expert difficulty in the Thief games, because if you're allowed to knock people out the maps become too easy. My intention was to have it that on Normal difficulty you're not allowed to kill anyone. On Hard you're not allowed to kill anyone or knock anyone out. And on Expert you're not allowed to kill anyone, knock anyone out, or even be seen. This makes a lot of sense to me personally, but I was wondering how you guys would feel about it.
    Last edited by DavidMcMurdo; 19th May 2017 at 16:27.

  2. #2
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2007
    Location: LosAngeles: Between Amusements
    1. Don't. make the individual steps higher than .75
    2. Look at M-SittingSleeper
    3. You could make him Good or Neutral instead of Team n
    4. Area brush what you want to select
    5. People implement those restrictions, or similar restrictions, in their missions all the time.

  3. #3
    New Member
    Registered: May 2017
    Quote Originally Posted by LarryG View Post
    1. Don't. make the individual steps higher than .75
    2. Look at M-SittingSleeper
    3. You could make him Good or Neutral instead of Team n
    4. Area brush what you want to select
    5. People implement those restrictions, or similar restrictions, in their missions all the time.
    Excellent, thanks! I managed to fix my guard and the pagan prisoner. I'm not sure what you mean with number 1. I shouldn't make each step any more than .75 higher than the last?

  4. #4
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2007
    Location: LosAngeles: Between Amusements
    Each step has a height and a depth. No matter if you carve steps with airbrushes of build them with solid. The height of each step should be no more than .75 and the step should be no less than 1.0 deep.

  5. #5
    Desperately dodgy geezer
    Registered: Nov 2001
    Location: The Wailing Keep
    2. There is also M-NewSleeper which has them sleeping on their back.

    3. Making him Good will make other normal (Team BadX) AI attack him. Neutral will make everyone ignore him and still make him ignore the player.

    4. Besides area brushes, the simple controls are to hold Shift to drag a brush or object, and also you can hold Shift and click other brushes to build a multibrush. That can then be Shift-dragged to move as a group, and also can be duplicated with Insert.

    5. Larry is correct, but be very aware that your planned restrictions on Expert are harsher than most FMs. Few missions enforce no KOs on Expert - your worry about it making the mission too easy is a bit misplaced IMO. Think of it this way: if you can't KO anyone, then the mission will be too hard for some players who will just quit; on the other hand, players who want the challenge will just impose their own restrictions to boost difficulty. Same goes for your required ghosting objective, we hear all the time about players complaining about forced ghosting. I've used it in some of my missions, but usually only in certain areas, and in a context that makes sense within the story line. Just a blanket no KO/forced ghosting rule which is only there to make the mission very difficult with no basis in story will just frustrate and turn off a lot of players. If you do decide to use required ghosting, also be aware that implementing it is very difficulty to get foolproof due to the general flakiness of the AI behavior in Dark. In recent year I've more or less eliminated such behavior and left it for the ghosting community to play that way on their own if they so choose.

    tl;dr It's better to give the player more rather than less freedom unless story dictates otherwise.

  6. #6
    Moderator
    Registered: Jul 2008
    Quote Originally Posted by DavidMcMurdo View Post
    5: This is more of an opinion question, but I always felt that you should never be allowed to knock anyone out on Expert difficulty in the Thief games, because if you're allowed to knock people out the maps become too easy. My intention was to have it that on Normal difficulty you're not allowed to kill anyone. On Hard you're not allowed to kill anyone or knock anyone out. And on Expert you're not allowed to kill anyone, knock anyone out, or even be seen. This makes a lot of sense to me personally, but I was wondering how you guys would feel about it.
    Quote Originally Posted by LarryG View Post
    5. People implement those restrictions, or similar restrictions, in their missions all the time.
    What Larry says is true. However, I'm not sure that's the best gauge of whether or not to do it. Yes, people do it all the time. But most players hate it all the time as well. Players hate forced ghosting, period. Many authors ignore this and force them to ghost anyway. It's just my opinion, but to me that's a surefire way to get people to not enjoy your mission, or to not even bother playing it. It's bad enough to force them to ghost on Expert, but you are forcing them to ghost on Hard as well. I think a more reasonable scenario from the players perspective would be that on Normal you can do whatever you want. On Hard, no killing. And on Expert, no killing and no knockouts. That still forces them to ghost if they want to play expert, but at least they don't have to stick to Normal to avoid that restriction.

    For myself, I'll never force a player to ghost an entire mission, and I'm a ghoster. I love ghosting. But it's quite clear that those people who like it will do it anyway without being forced to, and those who don't like it will not appreciate you making them do it.

    I'll add two caveats. First, there have been a few rare missions which have had forced ghosting that most people had no real trouble with. Something about the design of it made it less tedious or difficult, or perhaps there was no logical way to not ghost given the circumstances of the mission. I don't know. I think that's a different discussion. Second, there are certainly times when it makes sense, and most players wouldn't object, as long as it's only done in, say, one section of a mission. Here is one example: let's say that one of the mission's goals is to get into the police station and plant some evidence. If you knock people out in there, they will know something is amiss and may question the evidence you leave behind. So in order to ensure that nothing goes wrong, you need to not be seen or heard, and you can't knock anyone out. So, you're forcing the player to ghost that one building. But if they are not forced to ghost the rest of the mission, then they will still feel that they are free to play as they like, for the most part, and are more likely to take the one ghosting section in stride.

    The best argument for this approach, to me, is that in this scenario there is a logical reason for needing to avoid knocking anyone out in that building. So the need to ghost arises naturally from the circumstances in that case. Making people ghost an entire mission just because it would be too easy if they don't, is, in my opinion, a poor reason to do it. It's arbitrary, and will feel too much like an unnecessary restriction from the player's point of view. I think missions can be designed in such as way as to provide a challenge for all players, even if they go through and knock everyone out. There are numerous ways to make this possible.

    Again, this is just my opinion, and other authors will have their own points of view, no doubt. I just suggest that you give this some considered thought before deciding.

    EDIT: Yandros posted while I was writing, lol.

  7. #7
    New Member
    Registered: May 2017
    Thanks for that feedback, guys. It's very helpful. I think I'll just go for no kills and no knock-outs on Expert then. It seems that the Thief Objective Wizard doesn't allow for a ghosting requirement anyway (in the sense that if you're seen you fail the mission). I read a tutorial on how to implement a ghosting requirement, but it seemed complicated and it didn't mention how to restrict it to a particular difficulty level. I guess I'll just keep it simple for now. Besides, I guess screwing up and having to run and hide can be fun in itself.

    Actually, couldn't I have it where not knocking anyone out and never being seen were optional objectives? That way they're not enforced, but if a player achieves them then they're still acknowledged.

    I can't get these stairs working right at all. The enemies sink into them no matter what I do. Ah well. I can live with it.
    Last edited by DavidMcMurdo; 19th May 2017 at 21:22.

  8. #8
    Desperately dodgy geezer
    Registered: Nov 2001
    Location: The Wailing Keep
    That's just the joy of working in an older engine, AI do janky things like that all the time. Player won't be put off by it, they're all used to it.

    @Tannar: Down low... too slow!

  9. #9
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2007
    Location: LosAngeles: Between Amusements
    I wasn't saying whether or not it was a good idea to implement a no KO or full ghosting requirement on Expert. Although DavidMcMurdo said it was an "opinion" question, I took it as more as a question about whether or not folk have done this in the past. I would recommend that DavidMcMurdo read fan comments on missions and judge for himself, and not just about this topic but for all they have to say about their likes and dislikes. As I recall, there are even some fan surveys that were done and posted.

  10. #10
    Moderator
    Registered: Jul 2008
    Yes indeed, I think that's good advice.

    @Yandros: The wheel turns...

  11. #11
    Member
    Registered: May 2002
    Location: Texas
    Quote Originally Posted by DavidMcMurdo View Post
    I can't get these stairs working right at all. The enemies sink into them no matter what I do. Ah well. I can live with it.
    Did you rerun Pathfinding after making your stairs? The stairs can sometimes have strange effects on pathfinding so I use a wedge in front of the stairs to make the pathfinding simple. Then before releasing the mission I remove the wedge.

  12. #12
    New Member
    Registered: May 2017
    Quote Originally Posted by john9818a View Post
    Did you rerun Pathfinding after making your stairs? The stairs can sometimes have strange effects on pathfinding so I use a wedge in front of the stairs to make the pathfinding simple. Then before releasing the mission I remove the wedge.
    Yeah I tried that, but nothing seems to work.

    Another question that I forgot to ask was regarding the environment, specifically regarding distant textures. I worked through a tutorial on the subject and managed to get a distant city to display on the sky texture. At least, I did in the 3D viewer of DromEd, but when I actually go into the game, whether it's in DromEd or in the game proper, it doesn't appear for some reason.

  13. #13
    Desperately dodgy geezer
    Registered: Nov 2001
    Location: The Wailing Keep
    Post your distant art settings here.

  14. #14
    New Member
    Registered: May 2017
    Quote Originally Posted by Yandros View Post
    Post your distant art settings here.
    I just copied everything that this tutorial told me to: http://www.thief-thecircle.com/teg-o...ficial/sky.asp

    The clouds worked fine, but the distant art only showed up in DromEd's 3D viewer and not in the game for some reason.

  15. #15
    Member
    Registered: May 2002
    Location: Texas
    Can you post a snapshot of your stairs? If your steps are too tall or if the stairs are too steep then it could cause position problems with the AI while they are climbing the stairs.

  16. #16
    New Member
    Registered: May 2017
    Quote Originally Posted by john9818a View Post
    Can you post a snapshot of your stairs? If your steps are too tall or if the stairs are too steep then it could cause position problems with the AI while they are climbing the stairs.
    Here we go: http://imgur.com/a/X1Wof

    Each stair rises 1.0 above the last. I tried lowering it to 0.75 above the other, but the same thing still happens.

    Oh and another question I forgot was, how do you place unlit torches?

  17. #17
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2007
    Location: LosAngeles: Between Amusements
    Quote Originally Posted by DavidMcMurdo View Post
    Each stair rises 1.0 above the last.
    Um ...

  18. #18
    Desperately dodgy geezer
    Registered: Nov 2001
    Location: The Wailing Keep
    As Larry explained earlier, steps that rise only 0.75 are better for pathfinding. It may not solve the AI sinking into the steps issue but it will help avoid problems with AI and the player climbing them well.

    Quote Originally Posted by DavidMcMurdo View Post
    Oh and another question I forgot was, how do you place unlit torches?
    Several options. Create a non-torch metal object and change it's model name to the unlit torch model, or make a torch and either add the Difficulty > TurnOn(Off) property and check nothing, or create a lever with joints set to Reverse and ControlDevice-link it to the torch, and bury the lever in solid or put it elsewhere the player can't access.

  19. #19
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2007
    Location: LosAngeles: Between Amusements
    To be accurate, I didn't explain. But I hoped that the terseness of my response might prompt a search of the forum for more information, as this subject has been raised and discussed many times. Again, I admit that I didn't come right out and suggest that. I'm not exactly happy with the results when I've done that in the past, and so was waiting for someone else to mention using the built-in search engine or the stickied tutorials at the top of the forum. But as long as I was acknowledging the shortcomings of my initial response, I might as well mention what should be the primary approaches to self-help.

  20. #20
    New Member
    Registered: May 2017
    How strange. I unchecked "Enable New Sky" in "NewSky:Sky" and the distant textures that I set in "NewSky: Distant Art" suddenly appear in game. I can't seem to get this happening with the "Enable New Sky" box checked for some reason and none of the tutorials say anything about this. Mind you, even with "Enable New Sky" unchecked, none of the parameters I set regarding the distant art change it and it appears as a really pixelated texture that's way too close. I've figured out snow, fog, and clouds, but I can't get this to work somehow. It seems that I want New Sky enabled, I just don't know why everything is working with it according to the tutorials except for the distant texture.

    Anyway, thanks for all your help so far. It has been very useful.

  21. #21
    Desperately dodgy geezer
    Registered: Nov 2001
    Location: The Wailing Keep
    You will probably need to figure out what's wrong because in my experience (and I also just checked in my current mission), I only get distant art if I have NewSky enabled, and not if it is disabled.

  22. #22
    Member
    Registered: Nov 2003
    Location: X:0.0000; Y:0.0000; Z:0.0000
    I thought distant art only works when NewSky is enabled. If you can't get to work with it disabled, you might be able to have an object attached to the player that acts like the distant art. I'll need to test this theory. This does work with NewSky, though. I use this trick in the 10th mission of TROTB 2. I use a sphere object to get the far mountain range in there. Using distant art made it look like crap. Here's a picture of what it looks like.


    The nice thing about going this route is that you can change it for different areas.
    Last edited by GORT; 21st May 2017 at 17:33.

  23. #23
    New Member
    Registered: May 2017
    That looks amazing. I've no idea how I'd even begin to do what you describe so I think I'll leave it haha. Thanks though. How many polygons are we allowed to show on screen at once now? I've read so much DromEd material from different time periods that I've seen all kinds of numbers. I assume that most of the community here make maps that even people playing vanilla Thief 2 can play.

  24. #24
    Desperately dodgy geezer
    Registered: Nov 2001
    Location: The Wailing Keep
    Depends on what you mean by vanilla Thief 2. If you mean OldDark, then no - pretty much everything released nowadays requires the latest version (at time of release) of NewDark. If you mean with no mods installed, then it depends. Missions with lots of custom assets are better played without any mods, but those with mostly stock assets can be played with mods on.

  25. #25
    New Member
    Registered: May 2017
    Quote Originally Posted by Yandros View Post
    Depends on what you mean by vanilla Thief 2. If you mean OldDark, then no - pretty much everything released nowadays requires the latest version (at time of release) of NewDark. If you mean with no mods installed, then it depends. Missions with lots of custom assets are better played without any mods, but those with mostly stock assets can be played with mods on.
    I own three copies of Thief 2—my original CD version, a GOG version, and a Steam version.

    When I was preparing to get into map making for the game around a month ago, I assumed that the GOG version already had the Taffer Patch since it allows for higher resolutions. This doesn't seem to be the case however, since I couldn't get anything to work right without installing the Taffer Patch. As far as I can tell, the Steam version is exactly the same as a patched CD version. I kind of assumed that NewDark itself was a mod, but maybe not. I've played Thief 2 to death, but haven't had any reason to get into the technical details until now.

    So if someone were to buy Thief 2 from Steam, say, would they be able to play the fan maps here? Not sure how they'd load them actually. During the course of my experimentation I tried several programs to run fan missions. One was GarrettLoader, which was fine, but I ultimately decided to stick with the FMSelector (I forget its exact name since I set it to run automatically at the game and DromEd startup) that comes with the Taffer Patch, and from what I can tell from reading these forums, that seems to be what most people use. Not sure even how you'd load a fan mission without some extra.
    Last edited by DavidMcMurdo; 22nd May 2017 at 04:24.

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •