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quests clean up[message #163034] Mon, 29 October 2007 15:18 Go to next message
the scorpion

 
Messages:1842
Registered:September 2004
Location: CH
okay, from what i gather, Max seems to be a bit of a hassle still. I will have to redesign major parts of his script. I'm also considering Mauser's suggestion to have Max give you stuff from the hut in the northwest. This would in fact make sense Wink

then the initial quest about irina, galina, Dimitri, Ilja, how's your thinking about that? i broke up the original quest line so the player has more options. Just bring the papers to ilja ignoring everybody, go with galya, go with dimitri, have galya give equip etc.

In ja2, this quest was totally rigid and invariably the same. Would people want to have the encounter with galya/ Dimitri/ Ilja more automated? or do you appreciate the fact that you can freely chose how to?

I take mauser's notion of the initial quest being unclear as a suggestion to make the quest more automated, e.g. the player input necessary to get to Ilja with the papers minimized. I guess that makes sense?
Re: quests clean up[message #179264] Thu, 27 March 2008 23:38 Go to previous messageGo to next message
the scorpion

 
Messages:1842
Registered:September 2004
Location: CH
i'm currently changing the first quest to a more, say, self-executing quest. the player won't need to carry documents from irina to galya and back etc. just minimal player-side input will be necessary to get the first part of it rolling, even irina will join the squad all by herself so no additional recruiting necessary.
i already did that, it works mostly like a cut scene now and i guess i'll handle that similary for the part of the quest than goes in a10

hope nobody objects, i figured from some early input that more players would have prefered a more straight early quest story.

this also means no (massive) shortcuts anymore for the smart players... sorry guys.

i also replaced galya's face with a face that i think fits better to her voice. I think the face was looking too teenager-ish for the voice. (that's interestingly quite the opposite of 90 percent of the voice-face mismatches, where out voices are usually too young sounding rather than too old.)


next steps will be the a10 part of this quest and then dimitri and max

unfortunately, my voice actor to record a new dimitri has ceased replying my emails a long time ago, adding yet another +1 on scorpions seemingly endless list of quitters.

But i already made a new face for dimitri and he looks quite tough and rogue-ish (i'd use the term bad-ass-ish had this term not been devoid of any substance lately) and i might make a very new character for him, no ties to the initial quest and somehwere else on the strategic map.

then Max, well, i think his behaviour needs a core restructure. Which isn't all that bad as nothing worked anymore in the latest beta so we won't damage much ;-D

i'll have to try some things out in this respect.

unfortunately, my old npc scripter doesn't work anymore so i have to use this other piece of utter uselessness... which means awfully slow advancement.

also bodyguard already got a new face as the existing one... i wasn't happy with it.

i'd add screens but i doubt anybody cares.
Re: quests clean up[message #179287] Fri, 28 March 2008 10:03 Go to previous messageGo to next message
lockie

 
Messages:3965
Registered:February 2006
Location: Scotland
i'd add screens but i doubt anybody cares.


well , we've only been waiting for months .... Very Happy .
seriously , your mod is what I'VE been awaiting at least .I'm impressed with your vision for the mod , so don't get discouraged just yet ! :ok:


Re: quests clean up[message #179297] Fri, 28 March 2008 12:47 Go to previous messageGo to next message
the scorpion

 
Messages:1842
Registered:September 2004
Location: CH
the "i doubt anybody cares" was meant concerning the changes of npc face graphics. sorry.

by now, the first quest is almost as streamlined as the one in vanilla ja2. Still some player input necessary, but only sporadicly. Less choices and differences too, but maybe it helps other modmakers to see how to tie plot lines of several characters (irina --> galya --> Dimitri --> Ilja) over several maps.

now for some reason, ilja is not acting as expected, so maybe i forgot a trigger somewhere *NOOOO* (dontpanic dontpanic donpanic dopanicmuch)

;-D
Re: quests clean up[message #179408] Sat, 29 March 2008 07:46 Go to previous messageGo to next message
AZAZEL

 
Messages:754
Registered:February 2004
You have not forgotten any trigger
-well, as far as I can see.

The "beta" is a quantum leap ahead of what I've been playing more than an year ago, back when we were still working together. Progress is...really monstruous. Game works faster, and better in pretty much every aspect (hrm, I'd still say a couple of

Getting back to triggers: dunno what you really wanted to do, but there's always a variable you cannot control-who is used as speaking merc. Who the player hires, in other words. And with what stats.

The only way you can control that is to release with the beta a number of saved games, with pre-established teams. So that players report what happens, when they play with team x, using merc y, after doing steps 1,2,3,etc.
Copy?

Re: quests clean up[message #179415] Sat, 29 March 2008 10:59 Go to previous messageGo to next message
the scorpion

 
Messages:1842
Registered:September 2004
Location: CH
yeah, i was thinking about the especially story-wise possibilities of pre-set savegames and established parties.

this could be done as an option for testing, too. right.

however, we'd still be facing many uncertainties coming from the way ja2 interaction works. i'm not 100% sure, but there's probably some random numbers involved there too, or at least invisible modifiers e.g. in prof.dat for each merc and each NPC.


i made the initial quests again, in a different way than the beta. But now ilja doesn't cooperate as he was in the beta. strangely enough, i haven't changed his script in this respect, and i don't have a visual clue why he doesn't cooperate anymore.

i must have forgotten to set a trigger true somewhere in fatima/galya's script, but ilja's script doesn't tell me what it is, especially that he still cooperates if we're talking to him using irina (without additional triggers set to true...)
There is no apparent logical solution (and i tested quite a bunch of ideas) so i'm getting slightly annoyed about this. Maybe in the end i'll have to force him using jumps. I found out that whatever doesn't work directly can work if you jump to a different npc and back. Might use dimitri once more, but the more i tie up the scripts of these chars, the more impossible it becomes to move dimitri to a different location and make him a different RPC. Think i gotta forget that idea.

i think my design of the army base a10 is not so good. Having max give some equipment to the player is difficult in a geometric sense... except for the shooting range itself and the locked hut, there's nowhere i can have him go. I think he'll simply let the player access the hut and the equip there, and see that i can use the speech in a slightly sensible way... it's not always easy when restructuring a script, that's why many players complain about badly matching speech/ npc interaction

of course they can't know that i wrote the speech long before i designed the definitive scripts (time management and such...)


however, i'm very pleased with the new initial quest, i even think the speech fits better the way it is now (some minor things... but nothing bad)

i hope i can get good results for Max as well and then maybe tackle other problematic quests. especially the doctors thing. I may have to forget about having the player find this out by himself. It looks like without my spoilers, most players did not have enough info to make any sense out of those quests, also it again takes in the deciding stages too many player inputs. i'll have to find ways to wire it up better. a popup doing the decision would be optimal i guess. But working with quest popups... difficult

also the consultant tends to get forgotten before the last quest can be closed. And that quest is used to enable the doctors quest so maybe i'd have to enable the doctors quest earlier by something not so distant as the consultant, maybe one of the doctors or mike himself. I think that'd make sense, once you see mike, there's no reason to go to the consultant to be told that Mike is missing.

Re: quests clean up[message #180637] Wed, 09 April 2008 21:45 Go to previous messageGo to next message
the scorpion

 
Messages:1842
Registered:September 2004
Location: CH
so, i vastly simplifid max' script for now

first, he gives the silencer and allows to take the sks (walks outside the buildins)

as a next step, he opens the locked door to the first section of the hut to the west

if the next quest is solved, he opens the (previously locked) door to the second section, where more or less random goodies can be obtained.

his speech might still not fit but his actions are pretty clear now and require few speech.


as an interesting sidenote, the "npc opens closest door" action can be used visually or invisibly (just unlocking the door but not really leaving it stand open)

so basicly, npc interaction could also be used to open gates of whatever kind without a key.
however, it seems to break the script chain so maybe it will still require some workover (there is no consecutive npc action so maybe what matters is to jump to...

wait, ernest's script from vanilla ja2 should give me the answer... afair he continues his script after opening the door so there should be what we're looking for.

Re: quests clean up[message #180741] Thu, 10 April 2008 19:53 Go to previous messageGo to next message
the scorpion

 
Messages:1842
Registered:September 2004
Location: CH
ernest's script really gives the answer how to make NPC's open doors (without shutting them afterwards) while moving from one gridno to the other.

that function probably fits best to Max giving some equipment to the player. Previously, he used to block the door after opening it, the player had to activly switch places with him, which might already break the quest for some people (it looks like he doens't want to let the player through)

also found a partly working way to fix ilja. But there must be a second problem of some sort which i'll have to tackle too to make it easier.


so what's next?
as long as we don't add any new speech to dimitri, we can't add much to his script. Iron... might be worth making him be auto-recruited as an alternative to the manual recruitment over high leadership/ irina. That'd be fun.

other than that, dimitri, Iron, there's not much to change about them now.

consultant might give the Mike quest faster/ semi-automated
too many people missed that part of the script making the mike-and-doctors quests very tricky for them.

and then svetja... goodness. What to do with her. Maybe lets tie her to other npc interactions... maybe to the barkeeper, that'd probably fit.
and let's cut the options so she leads the player to chrissy, nowhere else, maybe let's have her initating a dialogue with chrissy even, that might fit.
Re: quests clean up[message #183814] Fri, 02 May 2008 17:31 Go to previous messageGo to next message
the scorpion

 
Messages:1842
Registered:September 2004
Location: CH
i knew it. when going on a quest clean-up trip, i wouldn't restrain myself to just clean up, i had to add more.

anyway, Some quests might now work more smoothly (e.g. initiating mike's quest)

but while working on a new npc's quests, i managed to implement a rather strange feature of having somebody who isn't even in the sector talk some of his speech...


i'll have to investigate the implications from such a feature as well as its limits.
being able to trigger more or less random comments from certain characters seems something well worth exploring
might be related to slots as well.


svetja is now also more reliable... will do the walking only in one way, showing some persons on the map in tactical.

also found out about some functions and that they are not that badly tied to slots as it sometimes seems. e.g. "kyle leaves deed on counter" can be used with other NPC's on other maps, just the gridno onto which the deed gets dropped is the same (item teleporting anybody? doable...)
Re: quests clean up[message #183872] Fri, 02 May 2008 22:12 Go to previous messageGo to next message
the scorpion

 
Messages:1842
Registered:September 2004
Location: CH
lol hell yeah. i oughta have dug into all the quests stuff years ago. Man man man. there's so much OBVIOUS stuff that i wasn't aware of and that i wasn't making any use of.

you'd always think you'd seen it all... then it takes you years to figure this stuff despite all the hints all the time. Man i'm so slow. i tell you guys, 2-3 smart guys could create very innovative stuff with ja2. Hell, all the tools and info was there. In fact, they could've already created something very unorthodox by freakin now.

i'll have to do more testing on related subjects too. man i never get the time to test all the things i want to test ;-D
Re: quests clean up[message #186096] Sat, 24 May 2008 03:41 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Hieronymos

 
Messages:26
Registered:December 2007
Scorpion you're waaaay too hard on yourself. RR is genius work, a truly fabulous JA2 mod..really the best one out there. You da man!
Re: quests clean up[message #186097] Sat, 24 May 2008 04:13 Go to previous messageGo to next message
KEN C

 
Messages:258
Registered:May 2007
Location: Aberdeen Washington USA
HEAR! HEAR! DA MAN!
Re: quests clean up[message #187721] Fri, 06 June 2008 18:16 Go to previous messageGo to next message
krazydude
Messages:8
Registered:October 2007
Just stopping by to say I'm still enjoying this mod very very much! Thanks again for your hard work!
Re: quests clean up[message #189036] Wed, 18 June 2008 16:57 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Malmsteen
Messages:1
Registered:October 2007
Location: Slovakia
i just started to play it Smile and it looks really cool Smile nice maps, story, many weapons and new stuff Razz THX to all who made this mod
Re: quests clean up[message #189084] Wed, 18 June 2008 23:47 Go to previous messageGo to next message
lockie

 
Messages:3965
Registered:February 2006
Location: Scotland
gotta say too scorp , I'm enjoying your "little" Very Happy mod .
cheers form all the toil and trouble , definitely seems worth it :ok:


Re: quests clean up[message #189294] Sat, 21 June 2008 21:37 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Sgt York

 
Messages:80
Registered:June 2000
Location: San Antonio TX
@ Lockie: so based on your discussion in the other thread, can we safely assume the RR installation problem you had was VISTA related and not a v1.13-2085 issue? Did you notice anything else we might need to be aware of while installing RR over
Re: quests clean up[message #189367] Sun, 22 June 2008 22:37 Go to previous messageGo to next message
lockie

 
Messages:3965
Registered:February 2006
Location: Scotland
Quote:
can we safely assume the RR installation problem you had was VISTA related and not a v1.13-2085 issue? Did you notice anything else we might need to be aware of while installing RR over


Re: quests clean up[message #189632] Thu, 26 June 2008 18:02 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Sgt York

 
Messages:80
Registered:June 2000
Location: San Antonio TX
Lockie: I assumed you used the latest v1.13-2085. Is that correct? Also, are you using the new inventory scheme, and if so, how;s that working out?

Thanks.
Re: quests clean up[message #189657] Thu, 26 June 2008 22:48 Go to previous messageGo to next message
the scorpion

 
Messages:1842
Registered:September 2004
Location: CH
you can't use new inventory with RR. See the other thread for some comments of mine that a patch for that is in the works.

(matter of fact the matching xml's have existed for a very long time but we want to meet some more criteria here)
Re: quests clean up[message #189781] Sun, 29 June 2008 10:25 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Kermi

 
Messages:92
Registered:October 2002
Sgt York


@ Scorpion: My new laptop has a D:\ partition that is separate from the o/s partition. I use that directory to install JA2 stuff and so far have not encountered any access or permission problems there.


Yay!

This is the way you should install games!
installing games in \program files directory is just begging for trouble..
Re: quests clean up[message #189796] Sun, 29 June 2008 19:38 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Khor1255

 
Messages:1834
Registered:August 2003
Location: Pleasantville, NJ
I always install my games directly on the C Drive when I have a smaller system. But my current desktop has a slave drive so I install all big programs there leaving the c drive for just the os.

I know that sounds like a lot but my system is only 40 gb to begin with and Windows is a freakin pig. Since I have been doing it this way I have not had any crashes or glitches other than those that are inherent to the 1.13 version or mod I am playing.
Re: quests clean up[message #189799] Sun, 29 June 2008 19:56 Go to previous messageGo to next message
lockie

 
Messages:3965
Registered:February 2006
Location: Scotland
I've got a large external h/drive fitted to comp , so should I move all game stuff in there ?
apologies for off topic Smile


Re: quests clean up[message #189804] Sun, 29 June 2008 20:13 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Khor1255

 
Messages:1834
Registered:August 2003
Location: Pleasantville, NJ
You don't have to especially if your regular c drive is massive but I find the more 'elbow room' you give large programs the better they work.
Re: quests clean up[message #189897] Mon, 30 June 2008 20:11 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Kermi

 
Messages:92
Registered:October 2002
you can propably get reasonably OK with installing games on C: drive, as long as completely differend directory, like \games or summat. System directories are not for messing about by some daft games.
Re: quests clean up[message #189904] Mon, 30 June 2008 21:34 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Khor1255

 
Messages:1834
Registered:August 2003
Location: Pleasantville, NJ
I always install them in a folder named for what they are (i.e. Renegade Republik) but directly on my c drive (well in my case my e drive), this way they are very easy to find and maneuver around between versions.
Re: quests clean up[message #190117] Fri, 04 July 2008 18:32 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Hoss
Messages:3
Registered:October 2005
Location: Ohio, USA
Scorp,

Great work on this mod. It has renewed my interest in JA, which had been flagging a bit of late.

One quick question - has any of the quest simplification work been incorporated in to any of the downloads yet? I'm thinking of starting a fresh game when that happens to see how the updates look.

Thanks again for all your work on this mod!
Re: quests clean up[message #190128] Sat, 05 July 2008 14:19 Go to previous messageGo to next message
the scorpion

 
Messages:1842
Registered:September 2004
Location: CH
the quest changes require intense testing. They are therefore executed on a more stable build than the public RR beta and will have to be backwards-adjustd once they are completed.

In short, it will take a lot of time if it happens (at all)

So again no reason to hold your breath i'm afraid :-/
Re: quests clean up[message #190136] Sat, 05 July 2008 16:16 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Hoss
Messages:3
Registered:October 2005
Location: Ohio, USA
Scorp,

Thanks for the update. I understand completely. Hopefully 1.13 will provide a stable mod base at some point in the not-to-distant future.

Re: quests clean up[message #190137] Sat, 05 July 2008 17:22 Go to previous messageGo to next message
the scorpion

 
Messages:1842
Registered:September 2004
Location: CH
well, my hopes in this respect are gone. however, there are elements of modmaking (like quests) that work the same way in 1.13 like the work elsewhere.

so i can design and test them on a stable and different build and then, port them 1:1 back to 1.13.


(at least in theory that is, being an inconsequent fool i went beyond mere quest clean-up in a closer sense so the backwards port will be not as simple as 1:1 )


the need for stability and ease of use is one that is more important during creation of a mod rather than for the final product. The end-user (gamer) will have no need to test quest xy 13 times in a row or test/ fix/ change the gameplay of map Z from all 4 directions, most things that make modding annoying under the current 1.13 settings will not impair the final play by the gamers and will go mostly unnoticed i think.

So there's always a chance for it in the long run. But once we'll be close to that, me or others will surely inform players in a new thread here, so we'll tell you when to start holding your breath Very Happy

Until then, i hope you have some fun with the current beta release.
Re: quests clean up[message #190139] Sat, 05 July 2008 19:40 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Hoss
Messages:3
Registered:October 2005
Location: Ohio, USA
Scorp,

No worries, I'm definitely having fun with the current beta.

Absolutely agree that the lack of a stable base is more noticeable problematic to the modder than the end user. I'm a software development manager, so I understand your frustration.

And don't be so hard on yourself - I think it's basic instinct for a programmer cleaning something up to clean up other things he/she sees at the same time. That's why programming shops have those pain in the butt software development managers and project managers :vader:, to keep those energetic developers from wandering too far off the plan..... Very Happy
Re: quests clean up[message #190145] Sat, 05 July 2008 22:12 Go to previous message
the scorpion

 
Messages:1842
Registered:September 2004
Location: CH
Lol yeah


There were some people trying to keep me from wandering off...


... yet i think they tired faster than i did Very Happy


guess there is just a limit of how much uncreative stuff one can do (especially since i do this for no payment whatsoever) at a time, so after some quest fix up i went ahead introducing that hilarious new NPC and add some quests along. Those quests in turn are now as poorly scripted as the ones i went to fix in the first place, so you can see how the wheels spin in place Very Happy

That's just one of the drawbacks of me having too much artistic freedom and creative control. But well, it ain't the time of UC anymore where they had a huge team of skilled modders for just that one project. Plus modmakers that have never known anything but being their own manager, lead developer and artistic director all at once also tend to have trouble to do teamwork.
Well at least for myself that applies Smile

But i also learned quite a couple of new things doing that so at least it meant my ja2 scripting knowlegde increased (where's my +1 in wisdom stat? i'll reach 55 one day, just keep pushing)



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