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ManGodAi4x / AquaCoop, Comic, Cinematic…Terminal Dark.

Post by Rman Virgil » 13 Feb 2010, 01:56

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July 8th EDIT:

I've removed 4c-AquaCoop Human MP pending the opportunity in late September to thoroughly balance test it when my LAN crew re-convenes for gaming. Alas, this WZ`community is not at all up to that challenge, it's as clear as a harvest moon.

However I will continue the development of the unplanned for until 2 weeks ago, SP SKI 4c-ManGodAi4X. Page 14 explains this new 1 vs.3 a.i. version as well the basis for my decision to remove 4c-AquaCoop Human MP from this purview.

July 5th EDIT:


All Human Players MP Version Beta 9C here:


http://www.filedropper.com/4c-aquampbeta9c


This MP version corrects most, if not all, the console errors logged by Josh's test running on Linux. These had absolutely NO impact on loading or playing.... I corrected them as a matter of principle & dedication to impeccable craft.


I'll do likewise to the SP Skirmish version & post a new beta soon.


--------------------------------------->


July 6th EDIT: Again, more major changes to this SP SKI version.

SP Skirmish Beta 9a version Uploaded..


http://www.filedropper.com/4c-aquaskibeta9a

This SP Skirmish version corrects most, if not all, the console errors logged by Josh's test running on Linux. These had absolutely NO impact on loading or playing.... I corrected them as a matter of principle & dedication to impeccable craft.



IN ADDITION......

Yea baby ! Solved the Ski A.I. issue. Why it even cropped up is beyond me because one of the major goals of this project was to keep it stock while pushing the design envelope with NO modding of any files - including the A.I. .slo & .vlo ... and yet a serious Ski A.I. problem came up... Well, it's fixed so I guess that is all that matters.

In any case, this SP Skirmish Beta v.0.9a will be the last Beta release.

I can now adequately test for balance without any help whatsoever and thus the next release will be v.1.0 in the Showcase BB & Addons (though I frankly see no discernible practical difference between posting here or there... except, ironically, there is quite noticeably more polished work posted here.)

Even though I will be making further balance tweaks to this SP Skirmish version the aesthetics of the map & its game play are both spectacular - by MY standards as a player, mapper and modder of the game since the year of its retail release. My standards are very high, clearly & objectively defined with not an iota of misrepresentation as seems to be the norm these days for reasons I cannot fathom nor can I relate to in any way.

---------------------> As for the All Human player MP version - the Beta 9C UL will look to be my last posted version until sometime in September when my LAN buds get together again and will surely help me get to the best balance state I can not seem to get in the way of needed feedback here. Some are real Pros too - pros as in they make their living in the industry working 60-80 hour weeks during pre-retail release crunch time..... and not because they simply play MP and have self-anointed themselves "Pros".

ALSO: see page 13 for specific testing guidelines & suggested set-ups for each.

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This map is an adaption of a new campaign map I made a couple years back called Crash.

It's being made entirely in Flail13's New Map Editor.

I have lots more work yet to do before it's even ready for full-bore, open beta testing; however......

As the title intimates, it is to be 2 vs 2 Co-op solely - I'm not even sure I'll make any concessions for it to run optimally against any Skirmish a.i.. In other words I'm thinking strictly, for now, in terms of MP with all human players.

Besides all the usual stuff yet to be done, because the map landscape is totally asymmetrical with a preponderance of water beyond the norm in WZ maps, one of the biggest challenges will be to properly balance the primary start base platforms and the secondary forward base geographic opportunities relative to 2 vs 2 and, what I call, auxiliary "escape-hatch" geographic opportunities, and "tricky resource cache" opportunities.

That said....

The reason why I'm even posting at this stage is because I seek feedback on what players who are into Co-op MP would like to see in a map dedicated to Coop game play and I will endeavor to go about implementing-integrating those suggestions within the framework already outlined as I continue to work on 4-c Aqua Co-op.

I'm not sure how much you can glean from the Map Editor screen cap below but if it suggests thoughts or queries that range outside the explanatory black-box above, you are welcome to share those as well and I will respond specifically, as best i can.

One thing I am trying to stay away from is embedding any scripting because I wanna keep this within the realm of mapping and NOT a Map-Mod (these take way more time than I have these days, for one.)

Mitaguyasin, RV :cool:

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Re: 4-c Aqua Co-op WIP - Seek Design Input

Post by Olrox » 13 Feb 2010, 06:55

I really miss Co-op maps with good quality, it's nice to see that someone talented as yourself is working on one!

I was really searching for a map where two players would wage war in the frontlines, and have allies farther from the heat of battle, to support them.

One of my future map projects will be a map like that, but with a narrow profile, however - that will make things much easier for that purpose.

I think that separating specific tasks for each player makes for a mor interesting Co-op experience than having them both in the same situation and only making similar things in coordination. Varying their initial states so that their needs are different shall be a good thing to do (then, as it's a 2x2 game, making the adversary teams with similar differences between their components shall compensate possible balance issues).

Maybe even making one team's member start in a obviously more difficult situation than his ally may be interesting. Either small space for base, disperse resources, or simply letting him start in a wide open plain, would all make one really need the support from another.

OR at least I think so :rolleyes:

~Olrox

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Re: 4-c Aqua Co-op WIP - Seek Design Input

Post by Rman Virgil » 13 Feb 2010, 08:10

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Olrox wrote: ...................
That is generous of you to say. Just trying to zone in on stuff that is uncommon at this time 'cause I find it compelling to get into, to do.... & perhaps others may enjoy it on the other side of getting it done. ;)
Olrox wrote:
I think that separating specific tasks for each player makes for a mor interesting Co-op experience than having them both in the same situation and only making similar things in coordination. Varying their initial states so that their needs are different shall be a good thing to do (then, as it's a 2x2 game, making the adversary teams with similar differences between their components shall compensate possible balance issues).
Hmmm... that does sound interesting. Creating viable specialization opportunities. I'll have to explore just how to implement. :)
Olrox wrote:Maybe even making one team's member start in a obviously more difficult situation than his ally may be interesting. Either small space for base, disperse resources, or simply letting him start in a wide open plain, would all make one really need the support from another.

OR at least I think so :rolleyes:

~Olrox
That sounds like a form of handicapping... Perhaps a viable situation would be where a strong player could team-up with a not so strong player..... same with the opposition. I'm pretty sure the less experienced players would enjoy the experience and learn to boot. Kinda like a Master - Apprentice relationship.

The question I would ask: would the stronger players find this set-up compelling ? I dunno the answer to that last.

However, the concept of some form of handicapping is intriguing and perhaps mulling it over a more flexible arrangement than the one just proposed will reveal itself. Something that would clearly distinguish a fun handicap from and an annoying imbalance. This would be the essential criteria in pursuing and implementing the concept.

Fresh, challenging and interesting propositions for this 'ol winged saurian to contemplate the nuts and bolts of actual implementation. Thank you. :)

Mitaguyasin, RV :cool:
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Re: 4-c Aqua Co-op WIP - Seek Design Input

Post by RBL-4NiK8r » 13 Feb 2010, 18:21

Well back in the day I was working on a 3 vs 1 map, the 1 had a full base with main mini-bases, it was set up on a mountain top with few ways to get in, but the key thing was ALL the oil was outside the base but well defended. It was kind of based on the Battle of Monte Cassino in WW2 Italy and the Gustav Line. I really wanted to have an AI that could run the defender in this case, but figured it would be better with a player.

The idea was the fact your going to lose the game vs 3 other players, but how long can you hold out. As for the 3 they start in a town type setting with enough power for 1 person to get up and running, and the idea here was to pass units to the others for them to move out till they can get there own base. The biggest problem with that would be the fact you get 3 people in game they all would fight over the oil, and bitch that they didnt have enough oil in game to start, thats why I finished it.


4nE

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Re: 4-c Aqua Co-op WIP - Seek Design Input

Post by Rman Virgil » 13 Feb 2010, 20:20

RBL-4NiK8r wrote:Well back in the day I was working on a 3 vs 1 map, the 1 had a full base with main mini-bases, it was set up on a mountain top with few ways to get in, but the key thing was ALL the oil was outside the base but well defended. It was kind of based on the Battle of Monte Cassino in WW2 Italy and the Gustav Line. I really wanted to have an AI that could run the defender in this case, but figured it would be better with a player.

The idea was the fact your going to lose the game vs 3 other players, but how long can you hold out. As for the 3 they start in a town type setting with enough power for 1 person to get up and running, and the idea here was to pass units to the others for them to move out till they can get there own base. The biggest problem with that would be the fact you get 3 people in game they all would fight over the oil, and bitch that they didnt have enough oil in game to start, thats why I finished it.


4nE
Interesting. Master vs 3 Newbs. I could do a variant along those lines. :3

I pretty much think that no matter what, there will always be a bitching contingent. Bitching is different than offering creative alternative options that are relevant and viable.

One thing I want is for the accompanying README (that details the maps GPM goals) to be simple and straightforward - transparently clear what your getting into and accurately reflecting the map design itself - which will be such that no single walk through to success will be possible (also central to the main design goals).

Mitaguyasin, RV :cool:
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Re: 4-c Aqua Co-op WIP - Seek Design Input

Post by Rman Virgil » 17 Feb 2010, 00:55

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Can't seem to get away from attempting some degree of a 'Cam - like' feel in this effort.

My latest thought is to create Aqua Co-op with an independent Scav contingent with its own special A.I. (as Player 7 since that seems to be working fine) AND at the same time provide Scavs that are Human Player Controlable in MP as well be driven by the SP Ski A.I. (DyDo, I'm leaning towards over my changes to BP) ... I still have to check if both A.I.'s will run simultaneously out of the box without any additional scripting.

I'm also now considering making some very targeted modifications to the Scav Stats from stock as well incorporating new Scav art assets. Even though I stated at the outset wanting to keep this strictly in the realm of map-making, when deciding to go down the road of creating a Cam-like experience even if you avoid scripting all together, some minimal moding seems worthwhile.

By the week-end I'll post some screens featuring the terrain's progress including the newly added "Reef Mazes", as well the "Escape Hatch Reprieve Sectors", the "Tricky Resource Caches" and the "Canny Airlift Trans Deployment LZ Sectors"... all the simpler stuff I deved in WS 2113 that doesn't take much in the way of time to incorporate like some of the other more complex stuff I was working on which ultimately is better implemented with UI/AI changes over the "smoke & mirrors" techniques I used.

Still trying to figure out just how to incoporate the suggestions involving "Team Specializing" and "Variable Skill Handicapping".... worth figuring out, I believe. We'll see if some epiphany comes to the fore I can integrate fluidly and artfully.

- RV :cool:
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Re: 4-c Aqua Co-op WIP - Seek Design Input

Post by DarkCheetah » 19 Feb 2010, 00:19

layout of the map looks good! now the enemy base and the co-op start location!

if you finish it, then please put in what information/options we should use when starting game
(tech level, power rates , scavengerson/off, adv, norm or no base)
... where did all the good ol classic ai's gone to? Turtle AI , Super AI

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Re: 4-c Aqua Co-op WIP - Seek Design Input

Post by Rman Virgil » 19 Feb 2010, 00:59

DarkCheetah wrote:layout of the map looks good! now the enemy base and the co-op start location!
I will do that with my postings over this coming week end.... sometime on Sunday.
DarkCheetah wrote:if you finish it, then please put in what information/options we should use when starting game (tech level, power rates , scavengerson/off, adv, norm or no base)
I will finish and release the first open beta in a few weeks (in March, to be sure). Yea, I'm slow even when I'm not too busy with RL stuff ;) .... and these days I have lots of RL commitments - all by choice, all good and many involving $$ (I'm talking on top of my 40+ hr a week job). :)

And yes, I will include a READ ME with all that info... plus more. Astute of you to see the need and importance of my doing that. :D

Regards, RV :cool:
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Re: 4-c Aqua Co-op WIP - Seek Design Input

Post by Rman Virgil » 20 Feb 2010, 03:40

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Below is a component of what will comprise the Aquatic Maze I'm currently working on. (Aspects of the major Isles topography are also constructed to complement this aspect of game play which has a puzzle-like quality to it in my mind vis-a-vis maneuver-deployment composition, as well vector and velocity options over land, sea and air.... in tandem fashion at its most effective but also as a last resort. Yea, I know, that last is sounding a bit cryptic. ;) )

Like many of my other aesthetic, eye-candy, topographic efforts this will also serve to broaden over arching strategic variety from the usual (at least, that is a goal) & even a slew of not so obvious tactical opportunities.

I'm wondering if I should spell-out the game play details of such in the READ ME, merely hint at them or leave them to be entirely discovered by players (sorta like Easter Eggs) ?

Guess there's time to decide.

More to follow over the week end.

- RV :ninja:

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Re: 4-c Aqua Co-op WIP - Seek Design Input

Post by Rman Virgil » 20 Feb 2010, 07:08

Rman Virgil wrote: Still trying to figure out just how to incoporate the suggestions involving "Team Specializing" and "Variable Skill Handicapping".... worth figuring out, I believe. We'll see if some epiphany comes to the fore I can integrate fluidly and artfully.
Think I've had that epiphany.

A practical concept wherein I can incorporate 4nE and Olrox's ideas related to handicapping & specialization along with all else I'm doing design wise.

I'll post a graphic layout Sunday that covers how these concepts manifest as an integrated whole with these other mentioned devices:

~ "Escape Hatch Reprieve Sector" opportunities

~ "Tricky Resource Cache" opportunities

~ "Canny Airlift Trans Deployment LZs"

~ "Independent Scav contingent" with its own special A.I. (as Player 7)

~ "Scav Allies" that are Human Player Controllable in MP (as well be driven by the SP Ski A.I.)

~ The "Aquatic Maze"

~ "Backdoor" topographic opportunities.

See to getting that graphic done by Sunday. Be much longer to getting it all ship-shape for stress-testing. Oh well, a thousand mile walk gets done by steadily putting one step in front of the other, to paraphrase an old Chinese adage.

- RV :cool:
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Re: 4-c Aqua Co-op WIP - Seek Design Input

Post by Olrox » 20 Feb 2010, 07:36

Rman Virgil wrote:I'm wondering if I should spell-out the game play details of such in the READ ME, merely hint at them or leave them to be entirely discovered by players (sorta like Easter Eggs) ?
Well, I would rather give the general guidelines {purpose of the map, expectable challenges, expected configs to play on) to have the most interesting games out of it etc.} and barely mention the existance of special qualities. But wouldn't make those too hard to discover: I think that the player will feel "superior" when discovering more subtle aspects of the map (I shouldn't have mentioned the utility of dunes on Arena #22 - it's this kind of thing I'm talking about), but will feel frustrated if it's too hard to do so.

How to make those, it's up to inspiration and creativity - not much skill IMO, more of a "carefulness" while making those subtle opportunities. You've got the creativity, carefulness and skill, and aren't on a hurry, so I imagine you're dedicating inspirated times to work on this, so you have what it takes.

Go increase the good 10%, and make it outshine the bad 90%. Take your time to do that, I say!

You are on the right way, no doubt.

~Olrox

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Re: 4-c Aqua Co-op WIP - Seek Design Input

Post by Olrox » 20 Feb 2010, 07:59

Rman Virgil wrote:Oh well, a thousand mile walk gets done by steadily putting one step in front of the other, to paraphrase an old Chinese adage.
I've missed that, it's nice.
But I'm a bit upset with chinese adages and proverbs since I've heard one that was just like that:
A dumb boy is more valuable than ten virtuous girls.
Yeah, it got me really apprehensive (to say the least) around chinese maxims. :stressed:

But hey, again there's the 90-10% stuff :rolleyes:
Many of them are indeed nice.

~Olrox

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Re: 4-c Aqua Co-op WIP - Seek Design Input

Post by Rman Virgil » 20 Feb 2010, 10:44

Rman Virgil wrote:I'm wondering if I should spell-out the game play details of such in the READ ME, merely hint at them or leave them to be entirely discovered by players (sorta like Easter Eggs) ?
Olrox wrote:Well, I would rather give the general guidelines {purpose of the map, expectable challenges, expected configs to play on) to have the most interesting games out of it etc.} and barely mention the existance of special qualities. But wouldn't make those too hard to discover: I think that the player will feel "superior" when discovering more subtle aspects of the map (I shouldn't have mentioned the utility of dunes on Arena #22 - it's this kind of thing I'm talking about), but will feel frustrated if it's too hard to do so.

How to make those, it's up to inspiration and creativity - not much skill IMO, more of a "carefulness" while making those subtle opportunities. You've got the creativity, carefulness and skill, and aren't on a hurry, so I imagine you're dedicating inspirated times to work on this, so you have what it takes.

Go increase the good 10%, and make it outshine the bad 90%. Take your time to do that, I say!

You are on the right way, no doubt.

~Olrox
All those points are well taken. I'll follow your council in preparing the accompanying READ ME. Appreciate the careful, insightful, feedback. :D
Rman Virgil wrote:Oh well, a thousand mile walk gets done by steadily putting one step in front of the other, to paraphrase an old Chinese adage.
Olrox wrote:I've missed that, it's nice.
But I'm a bit upset with chinese adages and proverbs since I've heard one that was just like that:
A dumb boy is more valuable than ten virtuous girls.
Yeah, it got me really apprehensive (to say the least) around chinese maxims. :stressed:

But hey, again there's the 90-10% stuff :rolleyes:

Many of them are indeed nice.

~Olrox
That is a strange one. Made me cringe at first reading. O_O

Then we have to remember that it is translated and translations can range from god-awful to masterpieces in their own right.

One of my favorite poets is Pablo Neruda and I can read him in his original native language so I can compare translations of his work into English - some are magnificent, others terrible.

Another one of my favorite authors is the Greek Nikos Kazantzakis. Now I cannot read demotic Greek but I can still tell that Kimon Friar's translation of "The Odyssey: A Modern Sequel" into English is a masterpiece in its own right (if I could only have 1 book on a deserted island, this would be my choice.)

I'm thinking that this translation from the Chinese was not adept..... a gut-feeling to be sure since I do not read any Chinese.

But, like you mentioned, we are yet again in Sturgeon's Law territory.

- RV :)
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Re: 4-c Aqua Co-op WIP - Seek Design Input

Post by Zarel » 20 Feb 2010, 13:06

Rman Virgil wrote:I'm thinking that this translation from the Chinese was not adept..... a gut-feeling to be sure since I do not read any Chinese.
I'm Chinese. That translation looks correct. The Ancient Chinese had some good wisdom (cf. The Art of War), but they also had some fairly chauvinistic beliefs (hey, few ancient cultures didn't).

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Re: 4-c Aqua Co-op WIP - Seek Design Input

Post by Rman Virgil » 20 Feb 2010, 18:52

Rman Virgil wrote:I'm thinking that this translation from the Chinese was not adept..... a gut-feeling to be sure since I do not read any Chinese.
Zarel wrote:I'm Chinese. That translation looks correct. The Ancient Chinese had some good wisdom (cf. The Art of War), but they also had some fairly chauvinistic beliefs (hey, few ancient cultures didn't).
No doubt the wisdom from the Ancient Chinese culture is vast - so were their science, technology, healing arts, literature, music, visual & martial arts as well. I am a longtime appreciator of Ancient China.

What made me say what I said was the English word "dumb" which has 2 very different meanings: being a mute or being incredibly stupid.

Without knowing how to read Chinese I would say the author intended "mute" and NOT "incredibly stupid".

If I am correctly inferring the author's meaning then the translator's choice of "dumb" was not adept because it could be interpreted or construed as "incredibly stupid".

Unlike poetry, which is vested in multiple, even contrasting meaning and interpretations, wisdom adages benefit greatly, and endure through the ages, in part because they have the precision of a rapier thrust to the heart in their word choice.

- RV :D
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