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Thread: FM Stats for 2017

  1. #1
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2003
    Location: Nampa, Idaho

    FM Stats for 2017


  2. #2
    Desperately Dodgy Moderator
    Registered: Nov 2001
    Location: Fields of bluegrass
    Thanks as always, Terry! I know you count campaigns as a single release and am not arguing with that, but just wanted to point out that if you take DCE and RotB2 as individual missions, you more than double the T2 count for last year, which is awesome! Also, I can't wait to see the T1G count this time next year, I predict double digits thanks to the T1 20th Anniversary contest.

  3. #3
    Thanks Ricebug! I miss so much T3 fms...

  4. #4
    Moderator
    Registered: Apr 2003
    Location: Wales
    Thanks for that, Ricebug, they're always welcome.

  5. #5
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2012
    Location: On parole
    Quote Originally Posted by Yandros View Post
    Also, I can't wait to see the T1G count this time next year, I predict double digits thanks to the T1 20th Anniversary contest.
    With nearly 20 authors having declared their intent to participate, there's even a possibility that there will be more T1 missions next year than T2 missions, the first time that would have happened since 2000.

  6. #6
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2003
    Location: Norway (currently Phoenix, AZ)
    This is always a very cool and interesting stat. Thank you for doing this, Ricebug!

  7. #7
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2002
    Location: Germany
    Quote Originally Posted by Yandros View Post
    I know you count campaigns as a single release and am not arguing with that, but just wanted to point out that if you take DCE and RotB2 as individual missions, you more than double the T2 count for last year, which is awesome!
    Speaking about campaigns...

    Apart from "Death's Cold Embrace" and "The Rebellion of the Builder 2", which were the heavy hitters, there were actually some more in 2017:

    Let's not forget the brilliant "Godbreaker" from January with 4 missions: (http://www.ttlg.com/forums/showthread.php?t=147454)

    In July Christine made her comeback with "Rabenbach / Raven Creek" - a two mission micro-campaign, if you will.

    And Cardia's "FTE life" also consisted of two related missions.


    But in 2016 we also had some:

    Cardia released "Umbelina" - a two-parter in June 2016: http://www.ttlg.com/forums/showthread.php?t=146776

    The Keeper of Infinity 2 got a second part - Raven's Nest - which was combined with a reworked Part 1 (but got two forum posts):
    Part 1 - Bad Venture: http://www.ttlg.com/forums/showthread.php?t=146159
    Part 2 - Raven's Nest: http://www.ttlg.com/forums/showthread.php?t=146179

    And then there is the "Strife Campaign" by a certain "Ricebug" which got a re-release for New Dark.
    http://www.ttlg.com/forums/showthread.php?t=146743
    This sloppy fellow apparently has to do some maintenance on his webpage (broken download link)!
    The and we could ask Ri... ahem... Terry if he counted the release in 2016 or not...

    This is still less than in 2017 - so yeah, it was a better year for releases - but the gap closes a bit, depending on how you count.

    (Pardon me if I have swept anything under the rug!)


    Also, I can't wait to see the T1G count this time next year, I predict double digits thanks to the T1 20th Anniversary contest.
    As for 2018 and Thief Gold I for one hope that "Thief: The Black Parade" will be finished... (http://www.ttlg.com/forums/showthread.php?t=146501)

  8. #8
    Desperately Dodgy Moderator
    Registered: Nov 2001
    Location: Fields of bluegrass
    That's very unlikely since everybody who's on the Black Parade team is taking this year to work on Contest entries, but I still call that a Win.

  9. #9
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2003
    Location: Nampa, Idaho
    @Calibrator: Thanks for pointing that out. I fixed the link.

    @Yandros: Yes, it's unfortunate that large campaigns only count as "one" mission. But, the authors argued back and forth about it and settled for what we have now. I may do a separate slide to highlight the issue. Personally, I find it difficult to stack an FM that took 2 weeks to create against a campaign that was years in the making.

  10. #10
    Desperately Dodgy Moderator
    Registered: Nov 2001
    Location: Fields of bluegrass
    I wouldn't worry about doing that, I just wanted to point it out. We already had the discussion in TEG last year and I think most people (myself included) agree with how you are doing it/have done it all along.

  11. #11
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2002
    Location: Germany
    If campaigns are counted as single "releases" (which they logically are) in *all* years the statistics are good in my book.
    It makes perhaps sense to stress that the statistics aren't about the amount of produced/released missions but the number of releases.
    I think it's primarily important to have consistency here so that one can compare numbers between years.

    But of course it never hurts to point out that some hefty campaigns came out last year as this isn't necessarily the case in every year.

    Now about the meaning of the graph:
    The key number since 2000 has been the number of T2-releases. It quickly killed the T1/G releases that were reduced to less than half a dozen.
    The big surprise is that the downward trend for T2 releases has stopped in 2014 and we have four years in a row with a stable stream of releases.
    Perhaps New Dark is the life support it needed?

    While the last two years were especially bad for T1/G they were not much better for TDM - which I find really surprising as the game system has matured well, IMHO.
    What I still find surprising is that TDM is lingering at half as much releases per year as T2. It in fact dropped sharply after 2014 again.
    Personally, I play both systems gladly (much more so than T3 missions) but apparently the authors prefer the older system, as ancient (and comfy) as it may be.
    I'm not an author so I can't judge what is easier to create but perhaps a TDM-exclusive contest is in order?

    But enough of my rambling - let's all hope for a fruitful 2018 and be thankful for it (I for sure am)!

  12. #12
    Member
    Registered: Jul 2014
    Noob observation / question: How did two T2 missions release in 1999 before the game's release?

  13. #13
    Classical Master 2008
    Registered: Jun 2002
    Location: Civitas Quinque Ecclesiae HU
    Quote Originally Posted by TannisRoot View Post
    Noob observation / question: How did two T2 missions release in 1999 before the game's release?
    They are T2 conversions of T1 missions (Lord Rotchest's Shadow and Autumn in Lampfire Hills, I think). They are counted with their original release date for [reasons].

  14. #14
    Desperately Dodgy Moderator
    Registered: Nov 2001
    Location: Fields of bluegrass
    Quote Originally Posted by Calibrator View Post
    If campaigns are counted as single "releases" (which they logically are) in *all* years the statistics are good in my book.
    That is the case, which was another reason why Ricebug chose not to change anything with how releases are counted last year, to maintain consistency. I think he also doesn't count cosmetic/New Dark updates of old missions as releases either.

  15. #15
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2003
    Location: Nampa, Idaho
    Quote Originally Posted by Calibrator View Post
    I play both systems gladly (much more so than T3 missions) but apparently the authors prefer the older system, as ancient (and comfy) as it may be. I'm not an author so I can't judge what is easier to create but perhaps a TDM-exclusive contest is in order?
    • T1/T2 creation: Easiest to create once you understand some basics. Best forum support I've ever seen for FM creation. When I dabbled in Doom 3 editing, they would ban you from the forums if you listed your web site in a post.
    • T3: Uses a modified version of UnrealEd. Prone to crashing, a nuisance to install and get your stuff to play. I struggled for months trying to get it to run. The forums were not particularily forgiving when I needed help.
    • TDM: Uses Qeradiant, or Radiant, as some call it. Unreal and the Dark Engine both start out with a solid world, where you carve rooms. Radiant takes the opposite approach, where the empty world is a "never-ending" air box. Leaks used to be the bane of the mission creator but I'm not sure about the present software.

  16. #16
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2012
    Location: Slovenia
    Glad to see the graph for T2 rising, even if just by 2.

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Calibrator View Post
    What I still find surprising is that TDM is lingering at half as much releases per year as T2. It in fact dropped sharply after 2014 again.
    Personally, I play both systems gladly (much more so than T3 missions) but apparently the authors prefer the older system, as ancient (and comfy) as it may be.
    I'm not an author so I can't judge what is easier to create but perhaps a TDM-exclusive contest is in order?
    While TDM's DarkRadiant is no Unreal Editor, it's still the most accesible and modern tool from all three. It allows different build styles, from simple brushes and patches to external models. It uses much better materials than T2 or T3 (diffuse, specular, normal textures, cubemaps, shader programs like heat distortion etc.), although you have to write materials in notepad (a bit tiresome, but doable). From the gameplay perspective, TDM has best and most smooth player movement. The engine is updated around once a year, Dark Radiant gets smaller but more frequent updates. People work on updates basically the whole year round. The problem is the lack of content, like more Pagan models, and more good models in general.

  18. #18
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2003
    Location: Rome, Italy
    Quote Originally Posted by Judith View Post
    While TDM's DarkRadiant is no Unreal Editor, it's still the most accesible and modern tool from all three. It allows different build styles, from simple brushes and patches to external models. It uses much better materials than T2 or T3 (diffuse, specular, normal textures, cubemaps, shader programs like heat distortion etc.), although you have to write materials in notepad (a bit tiresome, but doable). From the gameplay perspective, TDM has best and most smooth player movement. The engine is updated around once a year, Dark Radiant gets smaller but more frequent updates. People work on updates basically the whole year round. The problem is the lack of content, like more Pagan models, and more good models in general.
    I totally agree.

  19. #19
    Southquarter.com/fms
    Registered: Apr 2000
    Location: The Akkala Highlands
    I would agree on all the points Judith made except for player movement. It's not nearly as bad as TDS, but sometimes TDM movement just feels awkward to me. Thief 1/2 are way better.

  20. #20
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2012
    Location: Nova Scotia, Canada
    Seeing as there's going to be numerous T1/G FM's released later in the year from the TDP contest I can't wait to see T1/G's number skyrocket for 2018's stats

  21. #21
    Thief 1/2 are way better.
    I find T2 movement way too bobbing and swaying. If you want to see the worst of it, just play something like first mission from the Godbreaker campaign, the one with those awful slanted rooftops. Modern games are a bit more fluid and transparent in that regard. While TDM is no Mirror's Edge, it's actually surprisingly close to it.

  22. #22
    Member
    Registered: Nov 2010
    Location: Beyond boundaries of Magia
    I find it impossible to move to TDM or other engines to me, as I found it very difficult and I really want to mess up with Dark Project stuff more, while I find T2 most comfortable for crafting.
    I'm happy to see that even today FM development hasn't stopped.

  23. #23
    The editor is much easier to use than Dromed, at least in my experience. It does allow for the the same BSP building style, although it's not very efficient with that in terms of game performance. The engine works better with models, especially those fully unwrapped, with proper bakes and such. You can get much better visual quality and better performance over brushes and multiple materials. (Although that's probably true for any engine).

  24. #24
    Member
    Registered: Nov 2010
    Location: Beyond boundaries of Magia
    But as such lazy guy as I am, I'd prefer simplicity of adding new custom objects and models/skins, rather than better visual quality and much longer mission loading time. (yes, from my last experience, TDM is loading pretty long)

  25. #25
    Unfortunately, long loading times are often result of using many complex brushes, as the engine tries to optimize them and merge intersecting/unused triangles. Version 2.06 uses multiple CPU cores and that speeds loading times up a bit.
    Last edited by Judith; 24th Jan 2018 at 09:12.

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