Author Topic: [FA] Campaign 2 Level 3 by King Zelch  (Read 11060 times)

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Offline karajorma

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Re: [FA] Campaign 2 Level 3 by King Zelch
I'll playtest tonight. I didn't have enough time to do both missions.

EDIT : Finally found the time!

Still finding it damn hard! Which is a pity as it's preventing me getting to the later stages of the mission. I'll try it again on very easy in a couple of days if no one agrees with me so I can see if there are any problems there. If they do you probably need to alter the waves a little. In general most FREDders seldom go above 3 or 4 ships in a wing. You have 5 or 6 in some of yours and no chance to rearm (which means you can't simply missile spam the enemy ships). Furthermore since you're in a Perseus you're not even particularly missile heavy in the first place. That might just reflect my playing style but I like to smack bombers with tempests before they can get their bombs off. Especially in nebula missions.

You probably can get away with just trimming a few ships from those enemy wings without it causing any major problems.
« Last Edit: June 25, 2008, 05:26:25 pm by karajorma »
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Offline TopAce

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Re: [FA] Campaign 2 Level 3 by King Zelch
The results of my test run:

The mission's difficulty was all right to me. I tested it only once, on Easy, and I had no problem with completing the mission.
The technical part of the mission is, as kara said, pretty good. I'm happy with your way of doing the briefing stages and playing with the change-iff SEXP. I was also satisfied to see that I could not give orders to the Julius.

Complaints and recommendations, listed in no particular order.

- Of course, I recommend you spellcheck your mission, too. MS Word's spellcheck wil catch most of them. Again, as I already said to someone else, use commas before or after the name of an addressed, like in "Cover me, pilots" instead of "Cover me pilots." It's seemingly minor, but I keep pointing out this sort of mistake because MS Word's spellcheck will likely not find this.
- I recommend you merge the two stages of Command Briefings. You currently have two two-liner stages.
- I'd also recommend you lower some subsytems' integrity a little bit, because a ship starting with 30-some percent hull and all subsystems working 100% is not realistic. Some turrets could be destroyed, for example. I didn't check the campaign's outline, but I assume the Julius came under bomber attacks, so it's reasonable to assume that some turrets and subsystems were hit by bombs.
- Here's something more important: I advise you add the rendezvous navbuoys to the Escort List. Without them being on the EL, they're harder to find. If the player finds a nav buoy (say, by getting within 300 meters), you can use the ship-vanish to make it disappear, as you will no longer need that navbuoy (The Julius remains targettable, so the player won't get lost.) Also, it's beacon, not becon.
- When the Obliterator gets within the Julius's beam range, the Julius says something like: "The Obliterator is within the beam range of the Julius." Since it is the Julius that says this, I think it would be more realistic for the captain to say: "The Obliterator is within [our] beam range."

As I said, the technical part of it was satisfying, so was playing the mission. Overall, you deserve a thumb up for this, especially considering that you're a beginner FREDder. :yes:

I'll take a look at it in FRED and see what else I can comment.

[EDIT]So, here they are:
- You can use the send-message-list SEXP for successive messages. You can spare some time and effort, because they'll need fewer Events. Just don't forget that you give the delays in milliseconds, not seconds.
- It's good that you have so many messages. It gives your mission a decent atmosphere.
- Why does the Obliterator disable the beams on the Julius if they get within a kilometer range to each other? It's unusual, and without any explanation (like through messages), makes no sense. If you remove this, it will become unnecessary to beam-free-all the Julius twice. Also, why do you use the beam-free-all SEXP if you have set the "All ships beam-freed by default" option?
- Bombers only have orders to attack the Julius. Without anything else, they will just keep flying around after destroying the Julius. I recommend you either make them jump out (makes more tactical sense) or make them attack the fighters (more belligerent, they're Shivans after all.)

That's all for the first run.
« Last Edit: July 12, 2008, 01:27:39 pm by TopAce »
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Re: [FA] Campaign 2 Level 3 by King Zelch
Thanks for the review. :)
Since you agree with me about the difficulty I feel I am able to continue Fredding the level without having to decrease it. So work can commence again.  :drevil:
- I recommend you merge the two stages of Command Briefings. You currently have two two-liner stages.
Sound like a good idea. I had two stages so I could have two clips. However as Karajorma has pointed out there is no Knossos in the nebula system. So the reason for the second isn't valid.

- I'd also recommend you lower some subsytems' integrity a little bit, because a ship starting with 30-some percent hull and all subsystems working 100% is not realistic. Some turrets could be destroyed, for example. I didn't check the campaign's outline, but I assume the Julius came under bomber attacks, so it's reasonable to assume that some turrets and subsystems were hit by bombs.
I forgot to do that.  :nervous:

- Here's something more important: I advise you add the rendezvous navbuoys to the Escort List. Without them being on the EL, they're harder to find. If the player finds a nav buoy (say, by getting within 300 meters), you can use the ship-vanish to make it disappear, as you will no longer need that navbuoy (The Julius remains targettable, so the player won't get lost.) Also, it's beacon, not becon.
I had realised they where hard to find but a solution hadn't occurred to me. Making them vanish is also a good idea.  :yes: I have noted the speling mistake.
- When the Obliterator gets within the Julius's beam range, the Julius says something like: "The Obliterator is within the beam range of the Julius." Since it is the Julius that says this, I think it would be more realistic for the captain to say: "The Obliterator is within [our] beam range."
That was a bit of a slip.

- Why does the Obliterator disable the beams on the Julius if they get within a kilometer range to each other? It's unusual, and without any explanation (like through messages), makes no sense. If you remove this, it will become unnecessary to beam-free-all the Julius twice. Also, why do you use the beam-free-all SEXP if you have set the "All ships beam-freed by default" option?

It disabled their beams because the Obliterator would usually open fire too early for the player to do much. As for the duplicate beam free-all script this is because at first I didn't know about this tick box.

As for not using message lists, I didn't know about them when I started making this level. So I used separate events.
« Last Edit: July 19, 2008, 02:19:56 am by King Zelch »

 
Re: [FA] Campaign 2 Level 3 by King Zelch
I'm sorry for the delay in progress with my level. :(

Basically I've come across a bug and I can't get Mantis to work. What I've done is deleted all the text in one briefing stage. The editor had no problem with this at the time and let me save the level. However whenever the level is played it crashes just before switching to that phrase of the briefing. Also when I try and open the level FRED crashes. So if I didn't have a backup, which I do, I would have lost the whole level. I felt that since the bug was so serious I had to report it before continuing but I can't get Mantis to work from what I've got from this thread: http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php/topic,34786.0.html Anyway hopefully someone reading this thread can get it to work. Hopefully version 5 should be arriving soon.

 

Offline karajorma

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Re: [FA] Campaign 2 Level 3 by King Zelch
Post the broken mission and I'll take a look at it. I suspect I already know the cause even if I don't have a clue how to fix it (in code - The mission fix is easy).
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Offline TopAce

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Re: [FA] Campaign 2 Level 3 by King Zelch
Have you opened the mission in a text editor (Notepad, Wordpad, etc.) and tried to fix it?
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Re: [FA] Campaign 2 Level 3 by King Zelch
Thanks for your help. :yes: Fixing the problem with notepad was easy. The faulty part of the unfixed code is below:

Code: [Select]
#Command Briefing

$Stage Text:
 XSTR("As you all know the GTD Ionas has been destroyed by a second Shivan Sathanas. As of now the Julius will lead the battlegroup and you will get your orders from me. We're on our own here pilots. We must make a run for Gamma Draconis immediatly. There is no time to waste. The Shivan presence in this system will only grow stronger the longer we delay.", -1)
$end_multi_text
$Ani Filename: cb_sm2-10_d.ani
+Wave Filename: none

$Stage Text:
 XSTR("", -1)                          <----- This line here
$end_multi_text
$Ani Filename: cb_sm2-10_d.ani
+Wave Filename: none


 

Offline TopAce

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Re: [FA] Campaign 2 Level 3 by King Zelch
Out of curiosity: Why do you want to have a blank Command Briefing? Why not simply delete that stage?
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Re: [FA] Campaign 2 Level 3 by King Zelch
Top Ace: Becuase I wasn't sure which part had the animation I wanted and so I left them both in to check.

Anyway get version 5 here:
Normal Version- http://sites.google.com/site/kingzelch/Home/freespace/nebula--rendevous/FAC2M3KingZelch5.fs2
Easier Version-  http://sites.google.com/site/kingzelch/Home/freespace/nebula--rendevous/FAC2M3KingZelch5Easier.fs2

For the Easier version I removed a few fighters from the latter wings. Hope it helps...

 

Offline TopAce

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Re: [FA] Campaign 2 Level 3 by King Zelch
A few comments on the "normal" mission.

  • Still needs a spellcheck.
  • I haven't played the easier version, but I'm sure that you should continue developing that. The normal mission was a lot harder than the version you posted before. I died the first time around, being reduced to space debris from 80-some percent hull in 3 seconds. In the second run, I was very close to dying after the Taurvis and had to continue playing the mission with 34% hull. When the cruisers that would kill the second Deimos jumped in, it wasn't funny. I have bad memories of an "escort the convoy and lose the mission in the 15th minute"-type mission in Derelict. I recommend you not make a mission too hard if it's such a long one (8 minutes and above).
  • I didn't receive the "Return to base" directive. Since the player receives order to jump out while running for his life, it is likely that he will not be reading the messages. An RTB directive will solve this.
Playing the easier version... will post feedback soon.

[EDIT, First run]The first time around, I managed to break the mission. Leo 1 was ship-guardianed and its engines were stuck at 12%. Looking it up in FRED, I can see that you accounted for the possibility of a Leo miner being unable to jump out, but the problem is that they cannot jump out if their navigation or engines fall below 30%. Since the Aeshmas' arrival is triggered by a destroyed-or-departed-delay - Leo SEXP, they never arrived. My suggestion is to forget about the ship-guardian, and let their engines be destroyable to trigger the self-destruct.
« Last Edit: September 01, 2008, 01:27:41 pm by TopAce »
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Re: [FA] Campaign 2 Level 3 by King Zelch
The normal version should be identical in difficulty to the previous version. Maybe you where lucky on your first play through. :doubt:

That Leo wing is giving me no end of trouble, although I didn't realise that 30% was the cap point for jumping.
I'll add a RTB for the next version.
[disclaimer] As for the ending, I didn't write the plot for the level. [/disclaimer]

 

Offline TopAce

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Re: [FA] Campaign 2 Level 3 by King Zelch
The normal version should be identical in difficulty to the previous version. Maybe you where lucky on your first play through. :doubt:

I played the first version several times, and never died. Thing is that I did not notice that I upped the difficulty from Easy to Medium, so that's the reason. Still, a lot depends on the Taurvis that launch their dual Piranhas. I suggest you get the Taurvis rid of their Piranhas. There's a huge difference in difficulty between Easy and Medium, so it's likely that an easy mission gets that much harder on Medium. That's why I always playtest on Medium and optimize the mission for that difficulty. As I said, I don't suggest you make a difficult mission here, because this is a long one.

A rather random note on the navbuoys: They jump in via subspace. I suggest you use the No Warp Effect option. Navbuoys aren't supposed to jump in, but suddenly appear.

Lastly, I would be happy to spellcheck the mission for you.
« Last Edit: September 01, 2008, 03:23:36 pm by TopAce »
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Offline karajorma

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Re: [FA] Campaign 2 Level 3 by King Zelch
the problem is that they cannot jump out if their navigation or engines fall below 30%.

That's actually a bug which is fixed in 3.6.10.
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