Marathon Chronicles

Discuss and unveil current Marathon projects.

Re: Marathon Chronicles

Post Sep 24th '18, 18:52

Looks great overall, although the windshield on the front looks a bit weird. The symmetry is a bit jarring, I think. Other than that, pretty much perfect. I may also want a version of the front with the lights on, but I think I’ll probably be able to make that myself once I figure out glow maps.

I’ll work on getting a coherent set of Chimera textures together along with the 10 new textures you’ve created, and then I’ll post another alpha with reshuffled Lava set and reshuffled landscape textures later this week. (The only level that should require any further retexturing as a result of the landscape changes is “Cel din urmă vis”.)

I should note that if you can render textures in 512x512 or 1024x1024 in the future, I’d find that preferable. (I’ve done all my own original textures in 1024x1024, but Goran’s Infinity textures are all 512x512, and they still look great even on my 1600x2560 Retina display. The Freeverse M2 textures are all 1024x1024, so Chronicles features a pretty wide mix of texture resolutions.) Regardless, there’s no problem with these specific textures, since the Chimera textures are themselves only 256x256; it might actually be strange for the train to have higher-resolution textures than the rest of the surrounding environment. If Chris or Scott ever make 512x512 or 1024x1024 textures, it might be worth redoing these, but otherwise they’ll suffice perfectly. Actually, it might make sense for the dream textures to have lower resolution; it can be written off as a poorly remembered memory or something.

ETA: I have implemented the train textures in a new shapes file along with a satisfying mix of about 34 Chimera textures. I need to cobble together a set of HD variants of these textures, along with new bump maps for them. I also need to convert the Earth textures in “Neon Valley Street” from the Lava set to the Sewage set, which should be relatively straightforward. Then I’ll also have to retexture and, for that matter, finish off “Cel din urma vis” (I was planning at least one more level if not two). Once I’ve done that I’ll probably push out another alpha with RADIX’ textures implemented. I may also have time to start on the Carroll Street Station architecture this week, but we’ll see.

…hmm. having thought about it some more, it might be helpful to have two rows of textures for the front and back of the train, in addition to two columns. I hadn’t thought of it before, but the train is likely to be recessed in comparison to the rest of the station. I haven’t decided how much – I might only indent it .25 WU, but for realism’s sake it should probably be at least .5 WU if not more. For now I can just use these textures in the middle with split polys and then make the rest of the area pitch black, but once I’ve figured out how I want to create the level geometry, I may have further requests.

I also figured out why the last three textures in the Jjaro/sewage set weren’t loading in Marathon – I’d never made frames for them. I hadn’t used them anywhere, but now I can.
People should not be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people.

“The trouble is that we have a bad habit, encouraged by pedants and sophisticates, of considering happiness as something rather stupid. Only pain is intellectual, only evil interesting. This is the treason of the artist: a refusal to admit the banality of evil and the terrible boredom of pain. If you can’t lick ’em, join ’em. If it hurts, repeat it. But to praise despair is to condemn delight, to embrace violence is to lose hold of everything else. We have almost lost hold; we can no longer describe happy man, nor make any celebration of joy.” —Ursula K. Le Guin, “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas”

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The Man
Sarasota, FL

Post Sep 24th '18, 21:38

The Man wrote:You should be warned that the game’s about to get quite a bit more difficult starting on the next level. The sharp jump in difficulty is intentional, as I didn’t want every level to be super hard, and in fact you’ll still have some breather levels, but this was the point where I wanted things to get real.

In the M1 Redux thread I tried to explain my philosophy regarding difficulty. I think if you're playing a custom level, you should be expected to handle just about anything (assuming you are given the tools), as you are an experienced player and should be held to a higher standard. In other words, I'm ready spaghetti.
Are you OK? That storm was serious.

Everything is fine now except my internet is still out. I currently have to use the data from my phone and use a USB cord as an ethernet cable of sorts. I evacuated the storm, but in my particular case I wish I hadn't, as getting back home took a very long time as various roads and interstates were flooded. I eventually found a safe network of backroads that weren't too damaged that lead to my city, but the entire experience was very stressful. I'm just glad it's all over.
And I would recommend beating Eternal and Rubicon when you have the time; they’re two of the best scenarios story-wise and, since Eternal 1.2 at least, gameplay-wise. Of course, Eternal 1.2 isn’t done yet, and a lot of it is going to be radically different when it is, so you’re probably best off waiting until 2019 for that one. Lack of story comments is fine, since a lot of the story for Chronicles isn’t even written yet.

I'm a bit newer to Marathon. I originally played the Xbox port of Durandal in 2010 with some friends, and we had no idea what we were doing. I had fond memories of playing M2 even though I didn't remember anything in particular, so around spring of last year I downloaded the trilogy and played them from beginning to end and fell in love. I've been trying to play all the big scenarios, but I've been slow about it. Things I have beaten includes- Siege of Nor'Korh, EVIL, Tempus Irae, Kill Them All, and if it counts, Spectral Outpouring. I began Eternal a while back but I didn't get very far.
Spoiler:
I got to the level where there's a big tower in the center of the map and you're being swarmed by infinitely respawning juggernauts and Bobs.
I beat that level, but I don't remember what's afterwards. I suppose I'll pick it back up when renovation is finished.
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Flowers

Post Sep 25th '18, 01:33

Storms: The old adage with hurricanes is “run from water, hide from wind.” At present I’m roughly 20 feet above sea level and our house is quite sturdily constructed to withstand high winds, and of course there’s no danger of flash flooding here, so we haven’t evacuated for the last few storms that threatened Florida. We didn’t even lose power during Irma, at least to any noticeable extent, but a lot of areas around us were quite severely affected. In some cases, the danger when you’re at such an elevation (and there’s no flooding danger) is more from the shortage of supplies and such.

Regardless, a lot of times riding out a storm makes me incredibly uneasy, especially since this state will be mostly underwater in 50-100 years. There’s nothing you can do with the construction of rock walls and the like, either; the state is mostly built on a foundation of limestone. Can’t stop water from permeating that with a wall. Several major cities such as Miami, Tampa/St. Petersburg, Key West, etc. will all end up uninhabitable, and that is likely to cause a humanitarian crisis that our government is most assuredly not equipped to handle.

Anyway, stay safe. If your house is highly elevated and built to withstand winds, and there are no higher areas that could cause floods, you very well may be fine not evacuating. But these storms are probably going to get worse. I trust this house to withstand 120-130 mph winds, but I’m not sure how it’d do in 150+ mph winds. Storms like that aren’t really a thing yet, but I’d give it only a matter of time. And of course, as the sea level rises, we won’t be 20 feet above sea level anymore, and thus there’ll be much more of a danger of flooding. I’ll just do my best to enjoy living here while it’s still pleasant.

Difficulty: Good to know. This scenario is definitely constructed with experienced Marathon players in mind, which I suspect the tricky jumps in the first real level probably indicated fairly quickly. At the same time, I try not to make level solutions rely on esoteric knowledge of the game engine too much, though there is one bit in one of the levels where remembering specific details from a M∞ level and being able to spot the differences will assist somewhat with the solution.

Scenarios: You’ve played several good ones, then. The level you described sounds like “Unlucky Pfhor Some”, which I think is the thirteenth level. But yeah, a lot of them have been overhauled significantly for the better, so you’re better off waiting. I don’t think there are any plans to overhaul Rubicon so you might be fine playing that next.

I’ll try to push out the next alpha on Wednesday; I probably won’t have time until then.
People should not be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people.

“The trouble is that we have a bad habit, encouraged by pedants and sophisticates, of considering happiness as something rather stupid. Only pain is intellectual, only evil interesting. This is the treason of the artist: a refusal to admit the banality of evil and the terrible boredom of pain. If you can’t lick ’em, join ’em. If it hurts, repeat it. But to praise despair is to condemn delight, to embrace violence is to lose hold of everything else. We have almost lost hold; we can no longer describe happy man, nor make any celebration of joy.” —Ursula K. Le Guin, “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas”

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The Man
Sarasota, FL

Post Sep 27th '18, 16:44

My brain is utterly scrambled right now, but I did manage to put together this crude bit of architecture to showcase RADIX’ new textures. The final version will have a lot more detail. I still need to fix the bump maps on her textures, too.

I’ll have more later. I’m hoping to get an updated version out tonight, but between school, work, and the literally traumatic clusterfuck that is our national news, I’m not going to make any further promises. This week feels like it’s lasted a century, and it’s not even over yet. You shouldn’t worry too much about me – for starters, I’m pretty sure survivors of sexual assault are in a much worse position right now than I am, since I suspect the vast majority have experienced PTSD flashbacks by now as a direct result of the news (and in fact, I’m about to post something regarding that) – but I’m not able to spare as much coherent thought for gaming right now. Hopefully this will pass.
People should not be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people.

“The trouble is that we have a bad habit, encouraged by pedants and sophisticates, of considering happiness as something rather stupid. Only pain is intellectual, only evil interesting. This is the treason of the artist: a refusal to admit the banality of evil and the terrible boredom of pain. If you can’t lick ’em, join ’em. If it hurts, repeat it. But to praise despair is to condemn delight, to embrace violence is to lose hold of everything else. We have almost lost hold; we can no longer describe happy man, nor make any celebration of joy.” —Ursula K. Le Guin, “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas”

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The Man
Sarasota, FL

Post Sep 27th '18, 17:37

My thoughts wrt: current news have been pretty negative/exhausted, too. At this point, I'm not sure if we've had a week go by without some kind of disaster or scandal.

Regarding the architecture, it's looking (and sounding) pretty good. :) Seeing the train textures on a vertical column makes me wonder if some trains would be hanging down from the above floor to act as elevators, if that makes sense.
welcome to the scene of the crash
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General-RADIX

Post Sep 27th '18, 18:22

At this point in the Obama administration, the scandal du jour was that he saluted a soldier while holding a cup of covfefe coffee. Would that we could go back to that kind of ‘scandal’. But no, there hasn’t been a single week in this administration that hasn’t had some horrifying event, but some have been much worse than others. I think Kavanaugh, Charlottesville, Puerto Rico, and kids in cages qualify as four of the worst, though I’m sure I’ve forgotten many other horrible ones.

Your idea would be interesting. I’m still thinking how I could go with the trains’ appearance overall. One possibility is to let the player wander underneath them, though that seems silly. I could also just use arbitrary solid walls, but still let the player see beneath them. For the ceilings, I’m wondering if I can use some sort of untextured wall trick à la Quartz’ Fragments pack, which would probably require me to use ridiculously high ceilings with landscape texture. Of course, that would look stupid if people weren’t playing in Shader mode.

IDK. I’ll play around with it more. I think I want the tracks to spiral out from the centre in general (as much as is possible with textures that have to be applied at 90° angles from one another), with trains spread randomly across the tracks, but I haven’t figured out what I want the inside to look.


…I’m going to put a few tracks I find immensely calming here, just because music seems to be one of the best ways I find to cope with anxiety.

Genesis – Heathaze – simply one of the most beautiful songs ever written, both musically and lyrically.

Blut aus Nord – Antithesis of the Flesh (…And Then Arises a New Essence) – if the screaming doesn’t bother you, you’ll very likely find this one incredibly relaxing. I wish the ending went on for at least another five minutes.

Janelle Monáe – BabopbyeYa – according to my last.fm I’ve listened to her more than any other artist this year, which doesn’t really surprise me. Somehow she manages to make every album different from the previous one, yet immediately recognisable as her own work, and at the same time completely different from anything out there. This is the song that turned me from a casual fan to an obsessive over her music. Apart from Shiina Ringo, I can’t think of anyone else who’s done music that’s both this unique and this rich in depth this century, and I’d legitimately compare her inventiveness to someone like Frank Zappa’s.
People should not be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people.

“The trouble is that we have a bad habit, encouraged by pedants and sophisticates, of considering happiness as something rather stupid. Only pain is intellectual, only evil interesting. This is the treason of the artist: a refusal to admit the banality of evil and the terrible boredom of pain. If you can’t lick ’em, join ’em. If it hurts, repeat it. But to praise despair is to condemn delight, to embrace violence is to lose hold of everything else. We have almost lost hold; we can no longer describe happy man, nor make any celebration of joy.” —Ursula K. Le Guin, “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas”

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The Man
Sarasota, FL

Post Sep 29th '18, 17:45

Short on time, but some more CSS-related stuff I've been thinking about lately: it'd be kinda weird if Marcus called out Lysander about Charlie, but Charlie never actually showed up or was mentioned beyond that. I feel like, after learning what the Dangi Corp. actually did to his cousin, ghost!Charlie would be in the uncomfortable position of not knowing how to feel about Lysander and what he did. (He'd be unambiguously pissed at Dangi, though)

(As for the third Rubicon AI, I wonder if Haller would actually still be alive...though possibly not still working with the UESC, given that at least one guy on the Chimera wanted him put down the second he began showing signs of rampancy/Calix Temporum Syndrome)


EDIT: Unrelated thoughts about Pharos's motivation that I want to get on paper. Spoiler'd for length.

Spoiler:
To make a long introduction short, seventy years or so ago Pharos returned to Antichthon right in the middle of one of the worst massacres in its history.

After learning the absolute basics of what's going on, Pharos rushes in to help put a stop to it; in doing so he's exposed to all manner of vile atrocities, and by the time all the murderers are hunted down and executed, Pharos is well and truly scarred for life. In the aftermath, he looks into the tragedy more closely to try and determine what could've caused it; nobody's really sure at this point, so it's a haze of contradictory maybe-facts.

Eventually, Pharos notices that the only consistent information involves negligence-at-best on part of the current administration, who he already had significant issues with. The breaking point is the revelation that the govt. could've easily stepped in and ended the massacre far earlier, but willingly turned a blind eye because the perps happened to primarily target people that the govt. considered irritating/lesser/what have you.

Pharos storms in with a small army and hauls everyone complicit in this disgusting bit of malice to the Jjaro equivalent of Ft. Leavenworth (or maybe Gitmo). Fearing a repeat of the massacre if the govt. isn't restructured from the ground up (and, unfortunately, already having a deep-seated god complex), Pharos takes up the mantle of responsibility and begins vetting people to fill in the vacated positions that he can't assume himself. His idea of maintaining peace, at least to start with, is shutting every single loophole that allowed the massacre to happen regardless of collateral damage, and making it clear that anyone with the sentiment and the means to attempt another will be shot in the face.

Unfortunately, Pharos kinda stopped researching after "everyone I just had arrested was evil to the core". That was true, but there was a whole host of social and political unpleasantries that boiled over into "kill 'em all". I'unno exactly what those would be yet, but surely it would not escape the heroes' notice that, while Pharos is trying to do the right thing, there sure do seem to be a lot of cynical opportunists running around Parliament. (I imagine Pharos wouldn't be fully aware of this until after everything's gone to hell and his cohorts blatantly don't give a shit about his anguish)

I feel like one of those opportunists could be that potential foil to Pharos you mentioned--someone who very obviously bluffed his way into power ("I'm totally capable of compassion, honest!") and is only there to impose his will on the people. This lasts until Pharos notices that, say, the high taxes aren't actually going into infrastructure and the like...

As for how Marcus and co. learn about the above: not all at once, and not all reliably. Seventy years is still recent memory to people who've perfected functional immortality, but even if not, Pharos never got help for his trauma and so still can't discuss the source of it in anything but the vaguest detail. Many of his cohorts can talk about it beyond that, but being total douchenozzles, still aren't helpful about it. The populace living under Pharos's dubious rule have all processed it (or not) in their own ways, but most of the people Marcus could ask don't know the whole story. It takes a while for the heroes to piece everything together, but the end result is pretty much a confirmation of their worst fears: not only is Pharos's solution not really good for the people in the short run, it's likely temporary at best.

(I mean, Marcus could just visit a museum or memorial which might offer a more complete picture right off the bat, but he'd have to think to do that before getting himself declared enough of a threat to ban from Parliament...)

Wonder if they'd also get a slightly deeper look into Pharos's views on all this if Platina tried going down himself to make an appeal. There's still the association with people Pharos doesn't like, but Platina isn't looking to cause trouble (and frankly, is a lot more tactful than Durandal, even how I write Durandal in Inmortalitas), thus no reason for Pharos to throw him out. In general, Pharos is willing to leave you alone if you aren't being a dick, something the heroes will possibly have to take advantage of more than once.
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General-RADIX

Post Oct 1st '18, 05:59

Some great ideas there. My brain is too scrambled right now to make a coherent response due to lingering traumas I’m dealing with myself, and I’m not exactly dealing with an abundance of free time right now, anyway, so I’ll have to leave it at that for now.

I do, however, have the latest alpha up.

https://www67.zippyshare.com/v/sSd0qQ3P/file.html

I’ve been unable to figure out how to get masks to work correctly, so some of the textures are doubled up between .dds and .png. It’ll probably have to wait for awhile.

I’ll update the links on YouTube, Github, etc. tomorrow.
People should not be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people.

“The trouble is that we have a bad habit, encouraged by pedants and sophisticates, of considering happiness as something rather stupid. Only pain is intellectual, only evil interesting. This is the treason of the artist: a refusal to admit the banality of evil and the terrible boredom of pain. If you can’t lick ’em, join ’em. If it hurts, repeat it. But to praise despair is to condemn delight, to embrace violence is to lose hold of everything else. We have almost lost hold; we can no longer describe happy man, nor make any celebration of joy.” —Ursula K. Le Guin, “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas”

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The Man
Sarasota, FL

Post Oct 6th '18, 02:33

“Dimensional Bleedthrough”, the latest level I’ve thrown together, largely on a whim. I’ll just reprint my video description here, since there’s no point reinventing the wheel.

A preliminary run-through of a ridiculous level I’ve put together in the past few days. I haven’t decided whether to put it in the main scenario or to include it as a bonus level. It’s a mashup of two different iterations of the Rubicon level “Not *this° again…”, both of which in turn are both expansions of “Sorry Don’t Make It So” Marathon 2, which is itself an expansion of “Pfhor Your Eyes Only” from the first game. So there’s a long pedigree of this level being revised over and over.

I’d actually included a revision of the Rubicon “Not *this* again…” in a much older version of Chronicles, but I removed it because I felt it too similar to the original level. On a whim, I decided to see if I could use the Weland Copy & Paste plugin to combine my old revision with the Rubicon X version, and it wound up working well. The result, rextured and modified a bit further, is this level. I had to alter the geometry of few of segments of the RX version, but nowhere near as many as you’d expect. The resulting level has a ridiculous amount of 5D space, which is one of a few reasons for the name. The concept is that the player has been through so many timelines that they’re starting to bleed together.

Both versions of the Rubicon level aren’t terribly popular among players – justifiably, I feel – but in both cases, I think this is mostly due to the fact that Rubicon’s Enforcers *suck*, and there’s very little in the way of usable ammo in either version. This is a flashback version of the level, so it just uses M2 Enforcers, albeit with Chronicles’ mechanic of picking up ammo rather than weapons from them. For everyone’s sake, I also included an alien weapon close to the start point.

I also implemented, many years ago, a gimmick where all the Hunters on this level blow up. I’d actually originally planned for this to be a vacuum level before deciding that was annoying. That’s why all the areas from the original Rubicon level mostly use Cyborgs, Hunters, and Troopers.

Since this was my first time testing this revision, there are some major glitches. I took the liberty of putting Wasps back into the shapes file for this level, since the Rubicon levels used them and I didn’t feel like finding dozens of Flame Cyborgs and converting them to other monsters (the level would’ve been intolerably difficult if I hadn’t), but I forgot to animate the Wasp projectile explosion when adding the sequences, so they just stick around after hitting something, and other detonations eventually stop playing. I’d have corrected this after the fact, but it seems to cause a desync, so you’ll have to live with it in this video. I’ll undoubtedly play the level again, but this playthrough was 68 minutes long (by far my longest playthrough of any single Chronicles level) and I had no desire for it to go to waste.

The Wasps don’t play sound yet, either, as I haven’t yet cleared out slots in the sound file for them. (ShapeFusion has a feature to add sound slots, but I’ve yet to figure out how to get the game to read them.)

I also forgot to close some windows, and a careless player could get trapped. I’ve already fixed this, too.

There are a few other minor issues – mostly textures I forgot to update and so forth – but on the whole, I’m quite pleased with how this turned out. It’s very disorienting, exactly as I wanted it to be, and it’s a hell of a lot of fun. I think this goes a long way towards proving that Rubicon would’ve been a better game if the Enforcers hadn’t been so ridiculously OP. At the moment, the RX sections are still pretty superfluous, but I plan to create a more intricate mission that requires the player to explore more of the level at some point.

From a gameplay standpoint, I’m fairly certain I explore as much of the level as it’s possible to show. One specific area requires an assault rifle to access. I show where it is, but I can’t reach it. I’ve since added an assault rifle to the level, as I don’t care for it to be impossible to show all secrets in vid films. I also, as far as I’m aware, defeat all monsters, though a few may not activate. I tried to collect all items apart from the aforementioned secret, but a few ammo piles, for whatever reason, don’t seem to teleport in. I’ll have to investigate that when I’m less exhausted.

I also play through “Cel din urmă vis” afterward; I’d set the player to teleport there after completing this level. Neither have been worked into the scenario continuity yet, and “Cel din urmă vis” still doesn’t have an exit (I’m planning to write a script with Lua to open up an exit), so I stop after clearing it out. (A couple of Fighters are finicky about teleporting in; I’ll have to work on fixing that.)


I’m on the fence about whether to make this a secret level or put it into the main continuity. It’s a lot of fun, but people may already be sick of these maps.
People should not be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people.

“The trouble is that we have a bad habit, encouraged by pedants and sophisticates, of considering happiness as something rather stupid. Only pain is intellectual, only evil interesting. This is the treason of the artist: a refusal to admit the banality of evil and the terrible boredom of pain. If you can’t lick ’em, join ’em. If it hurts, repeat it. But to praise despair is to condemn delight, to embrace violence is to lose hold of everything else. We have almost lost hold; we can no longer describe happy man, nor make any celebration of joy.” —Ursula K. Le Guin, “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas”

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The Man
Sarasota, FL

Post Oct 6th '18, 02:52

Hm...maybe a secret level? (Specifically in the context of some sorta-post-game Vidmaster Challenge?) Since this would be, like, the fourth incarnation of this map.
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General-RADIX

Post Oct 6th '18, 03:07

That’s what I was thinking as well. I already have “Acme Station” as a secret level for exactly the same purpose. In both cases I think I’ve massively improved upon the levels they’re both based upon, and actually, both are quite a bit easier than their respective originals, but people are probably sick of this specific level. I still need to find an M1 level to adapt if that’s the case, though. “Habe Quiddam” is almost universally agreed to be the hardest M1 level, so maybe that one. Then again, this is sort of an M1 level, an M2 level, and a Rubicon level all at once, so maybe I don’t need an M1 level.
People should not be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people.

“The trouble is that we have a bad habit, encouraged by pedants and sophisticates, of considering happiness as something rather stupid. Only pain is intellectual, only evil interesting. This is the treason of the artist: a refusal to admit the banality of evil and the terrible boredom of pain. If you can’t lick ’em, join ’em. If it hurts, repeat it. But to praise despair is to condemn delight, to embrace violence is to lose hold of everything else. We have almost lost hold; we can no longer describe happy man, nor make any celebration of joy.” —Ursula K. Le Guin, “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas”

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The Man
Sarasota, FL

Post Oct 6th '18, 07:35

Latest revision of the game. I’ve revised both the shapes and the sounds files to add the Wasp. The Lookers now play their original explosion sound as well, which I’d completely forgotten I hadn’t added to the Chronicles sound file. The map now has “Letter to the Night” and “Dimensional Bleedthrough” available to select. I’ve also revised the net maps to add fog scripts to almost every level. I still need to revise a few of the levels’ fog scripts, and I also need to overhaul the random sounds in several levels, as, in many cases, they were made with really old ambient/random sound definitions in mind.

I’ve also filmed “Dimensional Bleedthrough” again with the new revisions and will encode it soon. I think it probably took me around seventy minutes to complete, which seems fairly normal for that level; it’s hard, really long, and really easy to get lost in. But I like it that way, so I’m not liable to change any of those aspects. This time around I was even able to explore the whole level!

I’ll update the links to the Chronicles alpha in this thread/Github/YouTube tomorrow; I’m about to crash. It's been an interminable, intolerable week.

ETA: New “Dimensional Bleedthrough” video.
People should not be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people.

“The trouble is that we have a bad habit, encouraged by pedants and sophisticates, of considering happiness as something rather stupid. Only pain is intellectual, only evil interesting. This is the treason of the artist: a refusal to admit the banality of evil and the terrible boredom of pain. If you can’t lick ’em, join ’em. If it hurts, repeat it. But to praise despair is to condemn delight, to embrace violence is to lose hold of everything else. We have almost lost hold; we can no longer describe happy man, nor make any celebration of joy.” —Ursula K. Le Guin, “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas”

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The Man
Sarasota, FL

Post Oct 7th '18, 01:11

I’ve made a ton of changes to the Github repository. I moved the solo map into a subfolder, and the net map now is included in the repository as well. I’m actually considering adding at least the shapes and sounds files as well, if not all the scenario data, but I’m not actually sure if there’s some limitation on the amount of data that can be hosted on Github with a free account. It would be nice to have permanent backups of all this stuff, but the storage space would start to add up pretty quickly, I suspect. If I could host all this stuff on Github, though, it would save me a lot of time making new .zip files and updating links every time I make changes to some small aspect of the scenario. I’m probably not going to bother uploading another .zip file for now unless I make another shapes/sound/script change, though that might happen fairly soon, as I may still tinker a bit more with the sounds.
People should not be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people.

“The trouble is that we have a bad habit, encouraged by pedants and sophisticates, of considering happiness as something rather stupid. Only pain is intellectual, only evil interesting. This is the treason of the artist: a refusal to admit the banality of evil and the terrible boredom of pain. If you can’t lick ’em, join ’em. If it hurts, repeat it. But to praise despair is to condemn delight, to embrace violence is to lose hold of everything else. We have almost lost hold; we can no longer describe happy man, nor make any celebration of joy.” —Ursula K. Le Guin, “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas”

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The Man
Sarasota, FL

Post Oct 12th '18, 08:41

Couple of thoughts about Inm. stuff that might be useful for Chronicles:

* Yrro created Thoth (as I imagine he did in canon), but feels no familial connection to the old ibis whatsoever (possibly because Thoth was too buy monitoring the S'pht to socialize with him or Pthia). I imagine he also wouldn't be too happy to learn that Thoth interpreted his orders to keep the clans in balance as "continue to do so even if an inherently destabilizing civil war breaks out, instead of ending the bloody thing as quickly as possible".

* Admiral Tfear started off his military career as a lowly Fighter and gradually worked his way up the ranks. Standard for most other militaries/navies, but the Pfhor Empire tends to give roles in those areas to bureaucrats, with the logic of "good at managing people = good at running a ship". Tfear demonstrates how dubious that is by virtue of being the most competent Admiral in the Empire.

Non-Inm. note: I have this mental image of Marcus recounting to Platina all of his adventures with Durandal (and internally freaking out whenever Platina mentions details he couldn't realistically know about). Maybe much later on, after Platina's realized what he is, Marcus might share some past-identity ordeals with him? Mostly as a way of saying "I'm in a similar situation and I'm not handling it in the most graceful, collected manner either".

(Would the Gilgamesh/Enkidu stuff still make for logical foreshadowing, or could Marcus's nature in Chronicles mean that Chronicles!Durandal wasn't Enkidu in his first life?)
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General-RADIX

Post Oct 13th '18, 09:47

I like all those ideas, though I’m not sure how the Gilgamesh/Enkidu foreshadowing would work. It’s been awhile since I familiarised myself with the Epic of Gilgamesh, so that doesn’t help.

On a more general note, my productivity has just kinda plummeted to a standstill. This was an excruciating week. On top of the trauma I’ve been dealing with, I’ve been experiencing the worst episode of depersonalisation I’ve experienced since roughly the start of the year. This is the first one that’s lasted more than about four or five hours. I’ve been in the midst of this one for about thirty-six, and, unsurprisingly, it’s higher in intensity than most of the others I’ve had this year as well. There’s a possibility that once I get over this, I’ll have some new ideas to work into the story/levels, but if that’s the case, I really wish I could experience a less destructive creative stimulus instead.

Hopefully things will get back to normal (for a certain definition of ‘normal’) soon enough. I’ll be fine. This kind of thing happens every once in awhile. It’s just excruciating.

As far as progress goes, though, I’ve made a bunch of changes to the net levels, most of which are up on Github. I’ve also posted films of a lot of them, though by no means all yet, in the Chronicles YouTube playlist.
People should not be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people.

“The trouble is that we have a bad habit, encouraged by pedants and sophisticates, of considering happiness as something rather stupid. Only pain is intellectual, only evil interesting. This is the treason of the artist: a refusal to admit the banality of evil and the terrible boredom of pain. If you can’t lick ’em, join ’em. If it hurts, repeat it. But to praise despair is to condemn delight, to embrace violence is to lose hold of everything else. We have almost lost hold; we can no longer describe happy man, nor make any celebration of joy.” —Ursula K. Le Guin, “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas”

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The Man
Sarasota, FL

Post Oct 13th '18, 19:23

The Man wrote:I like all those ideas, though I’m not sure how the Gilgamesh/Enkidu foreshadowing would work. It’s been awhile since I familiarised myself with the Epic of Gilgamesh, so that doesn’t help.


Basically, at some point in Inm., Vince starts having dreams that suggest he was Gilgamesh (albeit somewhat different from the Epic; this Gil was a commoner who ascended the throne via murdering the tyrannical previous king and set to work stamping out corruption in Uruk, but was incredibly harsh about it), and Durandal was Enkidu. Durandal thinks that Vince's dreams are just that, until weird stuff crops up in Durandal's own, then he's given irrefutable evidence that he really was Enkidu in his previous life.

My thinking wrt: Chronicles, at least earlier in development, was that this timeline's Marcus was also the latest in a string of reincarnations but hadn't realized it yet. Durandal dies, Marcus has weird dreams about Uruk, Platina shows up, Marcus wonders if there was more to those dreams (and what this could say about himself as well).

Now that it's looking like Marcus is more of a Highlander, I'unno if any of this could apply to him and still make sense. Maybe his actual foreshadow-dream-stuff would be provided to him by Thoth, in the latter's usual cryptic fashion.


wrt: personal stuff: man. D: I wish I knew more to say than "I hope it clears up soon".
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General-RADIX

Post Oct 13th '18, 19:40

Best wishes to Aaron from me too.
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Pfhorrest
California

Post Oct 13th '18, 20:32

Thanks to both of you.

With regard to reincarnation, I like those ideas a lot, but I think I want to leave it ambiguous as to whether Marcus has literally been reincarnated or simply had those memories implanted at some point (probably when he was made into a battleroid).

I’m also in the process of making some significant changes to the Pfhor set. In the process of working on “Dimensional Bleedthrough”, I’ve decided I want to have the M1-style green Pfhor sludge available to use on some levels as well, so I’ve added replaced several Pfhor Prime textures that I’m fairly sure I hadn’t used anywhere with some new, mostly green textures. However, since I’m also going to be using red sludge all over the place, the green sludge itself actually shows up in the lava set, replacing a light texture I felt was fairly redundant and that I don’t think I was actually still using anywhere. All of this, of course, will necessitate a new alpha, which I will upload in due course, but I’m still not sure I’m done making changes. (Also, if you see a green sludge texture in a lava level that doesn’t make any sense after I upload the new alpha, please let me know.) I’m also considering adding blue/cyan and possibly even yellow sludge, but I haven’t decided for sure if I want to do that. It would be fairly easy to create them, so I just have to decide if I think it’s worth it.
People should not be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people.

“The trouble is that we have a bad habit, encouraged by pedants and sophisticates, of considering happiness as something rather stupid. Only pain is intellectual, only evil interesting. This is the treason of the artist: a refusal to admit the banality of evil and the terrible boredom of pain. If you can’t lick ’em, join ’em. If it hurts, repeat it. But to praise despair is to condemn delight, to embrace violence is to lose hold of everything else. We have almost lost hold; we can no longer describe happy man, nor make any celebration of joy.” —Ursula K. Le Guin, “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas”

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The Man
Sarasota, FL

Post Oct 15th '18, 10:46

Latest alpha.

Latest “Dimensional Bleedthrough” video. To be honest, I might switch around some of the red and green goo areas. I think the green goo area with the enforcer may actually have looked better as red goo, but some of the other areas with red goo right now might look better in green. IDK.

All this stuff is up on Github, now, too, but a lot of it will look like garbage if you’re using old shapes, so you might as well just get the new alpha.

I am still figuratively dead. I will be capable of more intelligent commentary later, probably.
People should not be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people.

“The trouble is that we have a bad habit, encouraged by pedants and sophisticates, of considering happiness as something rather stupid. Only pain is intellectual, only evil interesting. This is the treason of the artist: a refusal to admit the banality of evil and the terrible boredom of pain. If you can’t lick ’em, join ’em. If it hurts, repeat it. But to praise despair is to condemn delight, to embrace violence is to lose hold of everything else. We have almost lost hold; we can no longer describe happy man, nor make any celebration of joy.” —Ursula K. Le Guin, “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas”

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The Man
Sarasota, FL

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