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General FreeSpace => FreeSpace Discussion => Topic started by: karajorma on August 26, 2004, 12:33:57 pm

Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: karajorma on August 26, 2004, 12:33:57 pm
Over sectorgame we were having a chat about how come new people come to HLP, get inspired and then run off to make their own campaign which 9 times out of 10 dies a horrible death 3-10 missions in.

We've all seen it, in fact many of us are guilty of it (hell, I'm guilty of it. TMA started off exactly like I described). It appears that the communities biggest problem isn't getting new blood but preventing them from running off to work on their own.

It isn't that the vets don't trust newbies or don't want new people on their teams it's just that most of us are reluctant to take on a new FREDder unless they can provide us with a demo mission or two to show off their skills. The problem with this approach is that often someone will go away and FRED a couple of missions and then end up getting ideas on how to turn it into a campaign and then we've lost them.

Conversely I've asked someone who's starting a new campaign why they aren't joining a campaign instead and they've said that it's cause they doubted an existing campaign would take them since they don't have much in the way of skills.

I consider this to be a real pity. Firstly a lot of these people don't just stop FREDding when they get discouraged but instead they actually leave the community. Secondly it's a waste of resources as even if they aren't the best FREDders yet it's still sad to think that there are playable missions rotting away on someones hard drive when it can sometimes be months between campaign releases.


Anyway what I suggested over on Sectorgame and now am suggesting here is that we do something to encourage newbies while steering their talent and energy into something more productive.
 What I'm suggesting is that we set up a newbie campaign. Nothing too difficult to FRED but something which would nonetheless be fun to play. We suggest that the new people work on that and as a bribe some of the more experienced FREDders will help by playtesting and suggesting improvements (as well as offering technical help).  

There are several benifits to the community as a whole.

1. Rather than losing the talented newbies to their own campaigns we concentrate them in one place and we all learn from each other.

2. Instead of losing their work should they get bored of FRED we'd at least have a few more playable missions

3. Newbies who don't get discouraged will become more experienced. When they get bored of this campaign they'll have lots of missions to show the hosted campaigns. What's more none of them will suffer from the kind of noobish mistakes that you can get into the habit of making if you work on your own the whole time (no ships on the y axis etc).

4. Lots more activity in the Campaigns/FRED forum. Which is good. I often feel as if FREDders don't seem to be seen over here on HLP. While there are tons of pictures of fantastic new ships which encourage people to mod there is very little to encourage anyone to get into FREDding. As a result less people do and campaigns like OTT end up being cancelled due to lack of FREDders.

5. HLP stopped hosting new projects precisely because they were siphoning away people from the existing ones. Quite frankly although I stood by the policy I didn't see much of a change because new people were just starting their own projects up without hosting. Hopefully this would act in the same way that the modding forum works for talented modders. The FREDders who show the most promise quickly get snapped up by one of the campaigns


Anyway now it's time to soothe any egos I've bruised.

1. I'm not saying new people shouldn't start their own campaigns but as I've said several times before it's a lot of work. Besides even if you do decide to do something single-handed it wouldn't hurt much to try something like this out first.

2. I hope no one thinks I'm being patronising to newbies. Quite frankly I wish something like this had been around when I was starting.


Anyway here's how I'd work the project if it got off the ground.

1. Brainstorm a few ideas for a simple campaign. We do this all the time and most of the ideas go nowhere so here's a chance to get something done if you've got a good simple idea. We select a simplish idea that we can tell in 5-10 missions.

2. Assign missions and get everyone FREDding

3. When a mission is complete the FREDer posts it and anyone who wants to play it does so. (Again this is what happens with newbie campaigns anyway to a large degree).

4. In addition to the general HLP testing one experienced FREDder plays the mission and disects it in FRED looking for things that could be done better. I've had TopAce do this with my missions and even as an experienced FREDder I've found it quite useful in terms of picking up mistakes or oversights. I sometimes do this to newbie missions anyway so this wouldn't be much beyond what I do anyway.

5. With the energy that new FREDders typically have we should complete a campaign fairly quickly. At which point we move on to the next one.

6. Whenever someone new to the community signs up and shows an interest in FREDding we point them at the current campaign in progress and say that although they are welcome to do whatever they want the newbie campaign is always happy to take on new FREDders.

Anyway. Anyone thing it a worthy idea? I want to hear from the newbies as well as the vets.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: pyro-manic on August 26, 2004, 12:43:26 pm
Good idea. :yes: Hell, I'd probably have a go at this, purely because I haven't touched FRED for a long time and I need to get back into it before I get going on projects again...

I'd probably also say that there should be an option for mini-campaigns. It's far easier for one person to do a mini-camp than try and complete a 20+ mission monster by themselves (yeah, it's been done, but only rarely). Needs more thought, I know, but it'd give people a real sense of achievement if they had a finished product to their credit (or perhaps a chapter of a larger story).

And obviously, we'd need people to write the campaign plotlines and mission outlines, though there's no shortage of those.... :)
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Hippo on August 26, 2004, 12:50:26 pm
I've been fredding since i got FS1 pretty much... If you need some help, I'll give what i can :p
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: aldo_14 on August 26, 2004, 12:52:36 pm
I have a bunch of fairly detailed campaign synopses lying around (albiet they'd need cleaned up to avoid needing to make as many/any new mods), and a shedload of simple ideas for modless campaigns (given that all I do/did is model, there's not much interest for me in actually using these ideas ;) ).

We should have some form of sticky jobs-post here - where people can advertise themselves or who they want..

I also think I know someone whose working on a project that would let itself nicely to use in this - but I need to talk to 'im first to check.  Hewnce the vagueness of the preceeding sentence :D

Oh, and we need a voice actors thread where people can register willingness to be,well, a voice actor.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: karajorma on August 26, 2004, 12:54:31 pm
Thanks Hippo. It's nice to know I won't be doing all the dissections myself :)

Aldo: I may know who you're on about but I'll let you talk to him first :) As for voice acting I don't mind if someone wants to do that but I'm not going for a huge polished campaign here. In fact I would be surprised if the campaign ends up any better than some of the one man campaigns on VWArchives but then the point isn't to beat the hosted campaigns but to instead get some missions under the belts of the new people to the community. That said I take pride in my work and I'm sure any FREDders involved in this will do too.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Gloriano on August 26, 2004, 01:32:52 pm
Hell yeah, I don't want see dead campaing's anymore.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: TopAce on August 26, 2004, 01:34:54 pm
I am having an ICQ session with karajorma about this. I think I will be definitely be able to help since FREDing is the only factor I am good at FreeSpace modding, I have enough time to look after new FREDers.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Goober5000 on August 26, 2004, 01:41:56 pm
FOW will never die.  NEVAR!!!11211 :D

Brilliant idea.  We'd need a story that could be FREDded without requiring any new mods.  Existing ones are probably okay... this leaves open the possibility of making a campaign in the FS2 era, the FS1 era (with the Port), or the Inferno era.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: TopAce on August 26, 2004, 01:46:02 pm
Keep Inferno out of this now. Let them work with the ships they know.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: karajorma on August 26, 2004, 01:55:09 pm
TopAce is probably correct that we should keep this as simple as possible at least for the first campaign we try. If we manage to get a campaign out of it we can see if other mods like the port or inferno can be used. I definately agree on not using new mods. Although newbies may lack skill the speed they work at is astounding. I definately wouldn't want to see that wasted on them waiting even a couple of weeks for a mod to be finished :)

Anyway I'm seeing plenty of vets who like the idea but not so much from the newbies. Come on InfernoGod, kietotheworld and all youother guys who've recently joined and are thinking of making your own campaigns would this be something you're interested in? Would it at least be something you'd be interested in if you hadn't already started your own campaigns already?
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Lightspeed on August 26, 2004, 02:33:16 pm
No mods at all would be good.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Zarax on August 26, 2004, 02:37:55 pm
I have a ready old plot of mine for that, it is fairly simple and newbee ready (did that way since i am a noob FREDer)...
If anyone wants to give a try they are all welcome :)
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: magatsu1 on August 26, 2004, 02:47:14 pm
maybe I should take up FREDing again. Haven't done it for ages and that's where I started. Any idea wether or not to use FRED_Open ? Might be probs. what with the background editor playing up and all.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Zarax on August 26, 2004, 02:51:47 pm
FRED Open only up to 3.5.5 or you will scare any newbie with the graphical glitches...
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: karajorma on August 26, 2004, 03:14:41 pm
I'd let them take their choice. 3.5.5 for most but if anyone wants to try a more recent build and use the newer SEXPs I'm fine with that too :)
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Zarax on August 26, 2004, 03:16:28 pm
Yes, but let's give them detailed advices about "newer, less tested builds" too...
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: TopAce on August 26, 2004, 03:20:33 pm
My old self is speaking again: Let's teach them to use Standard FRED and give FRED_Open to them when they have some basic knowledge.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: karajorma on August 26, 2004, 03:24:57 pm
Of course. I'm a big fan of the SCP and I'm going to push the new stuff when I can.

 However if someone has problems and can only use FRED 2 cause FS2_Open doesn't work for them that's fine too. Since the idea of the campaign is to keep things simple they'll probably be missions that can be written using the standard versions of FRED. After all it was good enough for over 3 years :D

TopAce. Teaching FRED 2_open is only marginally harder than teaching FRED. I don't see any point in limiting us or the campaign to it.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: TopAce on August 26, 2004, 03:48:02 pm
Just trying to give advice. We discussed it via ICQ.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Zarax on August 26, 2004, 03:49:58 pm
If a project will start i may be able to give some help...
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Axem on August 26, 2004, 03:50:19 pm
I think it is a quite interesting idea. I think one large obstacle with making your own campaign is that once you hit a certain point, you don't know where to go and the result is usually a half-completed campaign. I hit it with my mini-campaign at the final mission, and my result was a cliched ending (*GASP* It's another Knossos! :eek: :rolleyes: ).

Now with this, you have it a bit easier, because there is already story there for you. All you would really need to worry about is a single mission.

As for mods, definitely mod-less. It means less work, for everyone (Death to tables! :mad: ). Homesick has shown that you don't need any new ships to tell a story. Plus there's always modifing the alt-name and changing weapons in FRED to give the illusion of refitted vessels if they don't fit it. ;)

All of this babblering being said, I would be interested. :nod:
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: karajorma on August 26, 2004, 03:54:54 pm
In being one of the newbie FREDders or one of the experts (or something in between) Axem? I've only played the first mission of your campaign and I didn't look at it in FRED but what I saw didn't seem too shabby at all :)
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: kv1at3485 on August 26, 2004, 04:08:53 pm
I think if all goes badly, we could try to assemble some campaigns out of the half-finished campaigns (and miscellaneous missions) everybody has made.  Could be a fun, if chaotic, experience.

At the very least, the missions would be played, even if the storyline seemed slightly convoluted.

And I agree that if there is to be a basic project, that MODs should be avoided.  Nothing like a good, old fashion, FS2 experience.  Non-purists need not apply! ;)
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Axem on August 26, 2004, 04:26:06 pm
Quote
Originally posted by karajorma
In being one of the newbie FREDders or one of the experts (or something in between) Axem? I've only played the first mission of your campaign and I didn't look at it in FRED but what I saw didn't seem too shabby at all :)


Shield your eyes if one should dare look at my missions in Fred. :p Actually they aren't that bad (I think), it's mainly the message names that are misleading sometimes...

Anyway, I really wouldn't know where to place myself.

I've done lots of missions in XvT and XWA a few years ago, doing missions with FRED is pretty easy from what I've learned there (Playing with sexps are SO much fun ;)).

I wouldn't call myself a newbie FREDder, but certainly not an expert. Somewhere in between I guess.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: karajorma on August 26, 2004, 04:30:55 pm
Take a look at the first few mission to appear then. If you can advise do so. If you're not much better sign up :)
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: JR2000Z on August 26, 2004, 06:51:10 pm
I was able to FRED long ago but one only able to make decent at it's best missions. I could use a refresher course. :)

Probably for the best too. Should practice now since I am  already brainstorming for my own campaign.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: ShadowWolf_IH on August 26, 2004, 07:35:46 pm
OK.  Aldo talked with me and brought my attention to this thread.  I would be very interested in this.  I don't have much time to devote to actually fredding it or going over anyone's work, but i would be more than happy to accept the new guys into Mercenaries.  Here's how Mercs works......it's just an idea right now, but i plan to be working on it soon enough.

The player chooses a contract.  There may be anywhere from 2 -5 contracts up at a given time.  Some contracts may only be 1 month..ie one or two missions, some may be for longer....ie 3, 4, or 5 missions.  Each contract should be a mini campaign, and none of them have to further the storyline at first...the storyline is time based....ie...events outside of what the player is doing are happening and he gets drawn in..at one point, no matter which contract he takes......he is involved in the story line.  

once he is finished with his current contract, he gets to go shopping (maybe) and then choose another contract.  I actually have the basis for the campaign tree, which is going to be a nightmare.

Anyway, you can see how this would easily lend itself to what is being proposed in here.....and seein as i have talked to both Karajorma and Aldo, i'd may as well let it out of the bag in here.  The campaign is non linear, you literally choose your path.  I had planned on keeping it on the backburner until i cleared some more of my plate off, but i guess with the advent of this (thanks karajorma, just what i need...more work...;)) i'd may as well ask for help out in the open.  If we want to do this with new people, then i think what we need to do is get a solid fredteam who can look over the work that they do.  I'd be happy to run the MOD, and there would be a few mods in there, but i cannot oversee every aspect at this time.  So it's up to you guys if we want to do this or go for something even more simple.  I think that having each fredder build a mini campaign and some standalone missions would be good experience for them.  They can also come up with storylines and such.  We can teach them.

Thanks for thinking of me Aldo and Kara.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Johnmike on August 26, 2004, 08:21:30 pm
I say we create an FS:SCP offical map creation system.  As in, people are broken down into groups, and everyone works on one mission or campaign until it's finished.  This will let everyone merge ideas.  Isn't it wonderful?
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: kv1at3485 on August 26, 2004, 08:50:42 pm
Another thing to keep new FREDders occupied would be to (possibly) make multiplayer conversions of singleplayer missions.  That way, they wouldn't need to create missions from scratch, but they'd still have to fiddle around with balance issues, and perhaps even expand the mission a bit.  Almost like making half a mission.

Another thing is that there are a lot of single player missions that could simply use some touch ups and polishing.  If new FREDders were to polish up the missions then convert them, that would also be a valuable source of 'training.'
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Ghostavo on August 26, 2004, 09:00:33 pm
Of course not all FREDders have the oportunity to test multiplayer missions...

Making more complex tutorials could help, but realisticly I don't see it happening.

Giving FREDders "assignments" should be interesting. You give a mission's general idea, and let their imagination make everything else up.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: JR2000Z on August 26, 2004, 09:04:38 pm
If everybody in the community jumps in, we could have up to 2,113 new missions. That would be interesting. ;)
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Pilot Of The US on August 26, 2004, 11:17:44 pm
hmmm, im very interested. Ive so far finished 2 missions (i think), and have released 1 (both are for FS2 vanila), so im still very much a newbie.  

I think this is a great idea, but keep new stuff to a minimum, eg. models, tables, SCP, etc..... so we dont run into too many problems.

New campaigns for FS2 vanila might also be a good idea, coz ive had lots of issues with FS2 open, prolly coz i got a slow/crappy comp. but anyway exellent idea.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Singh on August 26, 2004, 11:39:26 pm
If you ever need any ideas or help reviewing missions, I can help out. I've been itching to FRED my own campaign using just the Vanilla stuff set right alongside the original FS2 campaign (though based partially on the Homesick concept). It won't be large, but then it wont be dull either :drevil:

I may not be an expert at FREDding, but I can do stuff, if nothing else :p :drevil:
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Gloriano on August 26, 2004, 11:48:42 pm
Quote
Originally posted by ShadowWolf_IH



Heh, I knew it was you Aldo and Kara talked about.
and well  :yes: :yes: :yes:
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Ransom on August 27, 2004, 12:53:22 am
As a newbie FREDder, I'm... really not sure what I should be posting, or even why I'm typing this, as usually when I start typing pointless things like this into the message I end up not posting anything anyway. Clearly however, that's not going to happen this time so I guess I'll have to figure out something useful to say in this post. Er... oh yes. I'd like to point out that I never FREDded using the original FRED2, and as such I have no idea what its limitations are (what sexp's it doesn't have) or what the graphic glitches are, beyond the obvious. This is partly because vanilla FRED2 doesn't even work on my system.

Anyway, my question is what's the major differences between FRED2 and FRED2 Open? Why would it be better for newbies to start with the original? Also that, even though I'm well aware I'm still a newbie and need to get more experience, I'd only join the newbie campaign based on whether the story and campaign itself interested me enough. I don't think I would be able to work on a campaign that didn't interest me, and I'm fairly certain that'd be the same with others. Newbies probably wouldn't be drawn to work on it, being the impatient people they (we) are, if it didn't interest them as a campaign as well as a learning experience.

With that said, ShadowWolf's idea (at least, how I understood it) is a good one. If this newbie campaign was a series of mini-campaigns where each group worked out their own individual story for that campaign, I think this could work. It's got me interested, at least. Because generally every newbie wants to do their own thing, which is why this thread is here in the first place. It'd be good if they were still allowed to do that, but in a more controlled environment.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Pilot Of The US on August 27, 2004, 03:17:18 am
Yeah, you're right. The newbie has to be interested in the campaign / story, otherwise there's a high chance they wont bother joining in.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Pilot Of The US on August 27, 2004, 03:19:08 am
Yeah, you're right. The newbie has to be interested in the campaign / story, otherwise there's a high chance they wont bother joining in.

(by my understanding) - FRED2 has less features, lower limits, less sexps, less creative options, etc...... and prolly doesnt work with FS2 open

EDIT : Sorry double posted by accident.....
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: TopAce on August 27, 2004, 04:20:14 am
FRED2 missions DO with FS_Open. Having an ICQ talk with karajorma yesterday, I know he would say let newbies use a stable FRED_Open(3.5.5). I tried to advise him not to use FRED_Open by start, but he refused me.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: aldo_14 on August 27, 2004, 05:50:08 am
Well, if no-one uses FRED_open, then no-one will ever (be in a position to) find any bugs......
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Pilot Of The US on August 27, 2004, 06:14:49 am
But FRED2 open is way more complicated that FRED2, and (i believe) has more bugs and problems. Newbies want to keep FREDing without having to report bugs and wait for them to be fixed, or have another version released.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Ransom on August 27, 2004, 06:23:59 am
How is FRED2 Open more complicated? Complicated as in more options, or complicated as in it's harder to use? If it's the latter, then I see why it'd be better to start with FRED2, but if it's just got more options I'm not sure why that's a problem.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Pilot Of The US on August 27, 2004, 06:27:51 am
Well, a bit from colum A and a bit from colum B. Firstly if it has more options then the newbies dont know what they are all used for and what sexps to use for what results, coz sometimes it can get very confusing if you're staring at 100 diffrent options. the second well, you've got the bug, system requirements (new computers do cost), etc.....
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Zarax on August 27, 2004, 07:12:03 am
FRED 3.5.5 has the best balance IMHO...
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: karajorma on August 27, 2004, 07:14:47 am
Right. Just to clarify the FRED option.

You can make good missions in any version of FRED. If one of the people likes FRED 3.6 and can work well with it I see no reason to say to them that missions must be done with FRED2 or we're not interested.

My idea is to simply let the newbies use whichever version of FRED they want to. There is no real need to push for any particular version of FRED as an absolute necessity and I feel it would be counterproductive to do so.

On the other hand I do feel that FRED 3.5.5 is a better platform to start from than FRED2 as with it we can solve problems with the new SEXPs that otherwise require long and complicated workarounds.  So I'll be suggesting and nudging anyone in this project towards FRED2_Open but I certainly won't be requiring it.

As for FRED 3.5.5 being complicated :D There are only a few new things that newbies will run into. There are 10-20 more SEXPs which isn't much consider we already had probably close to 100 in FRED2. There are some new tickboxes which actually make missions easier (we don't have to explain how to beam-free-all for one thing :D ) Most of the new stuff in 3.5.5 is to do with mods and we won't be touching that anyway :)
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: TopAce on August 27, 2004, 07:15:05 am
FRED_Open is not more complicated, even for unexperienced users. Believe me. I used both quite a lot. Especially Retail FRED2.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Ghostavo on August 27, 2004, 07:25:47 am
When one is used to working with FRED2, one can have a bit of dificulty locating certain sexps which before were together in a specific place... it's all a matter of getting used to it.

My advice would be to let FREDders choose between FRED2 and a not buggy but current version of FRED_Open.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: karajorma on August 27, 2004, 07:50:39 am
Quote
Originally posted by ShadowWolf_IH
OK.  Aldo talked with me and brought my attention to this thread.  I would be very interested in this.


Yeah. As soon as Aldo mentioned knowing someone who might be interested I thought this would be perfect for Mercs.

Quote
Originally posted by ShadowWolf_IH
The player chooses a contract.  There may be anywhere from 2 -5 contracts up at a given time.  Some contracts may only be 1 month..ie one or two missions, some may be for longer....ie 3, 4, or 5 missions.  Each contract should be a mini campaign, and none of them have to further the storyline at first...the storyline is time based....ie...events outside of what the player is doing are happening and he gets drawn in..at one point, no matter which contract he takes......he is involved in the story line.  

once he is finished with his current contract, he gets to go shopping (maybe) and then choose another contract.  I actually have the basis for the campaign tree, which is going to be a nightmare.


There are only three basic problems I see with doing things for Mercs as opposed to coming up with a new campaign idea.

1. Any Shivans involved? Newbies love shivans and they may be a little uninterested in an untested idea revolving around a shivanless campaign.

2. I want to see campaigns being released from this project fairly quickly so as to not let anyone get discouraged by how slowly things are going. Mercs sounds like a fairly big project and although the missions will be very simple there will be a lot of them.

3. I'd prefer to do this out in the open on the campaigns forum with every mission available for download as soon as it's ready for beta testing. I'd prefer to see open discussion of problems and their solutions rather than keeping everything in a closed internal or via IM/PM. I'm sure they'll be people who won't play the missions while in beta and will wait for the finished version but I'd like to see as much help from the community as possible on this and it's hard to do that if everything is kept private.

 This doesn't mean I see no point in working for mercs. Quite simply we could take a mini-campaign arc aside and work on that. The other thing is that I don't think I'm overestimating the newbies when I say that I expect this project to move MUCH quicker than the hosted projects since the missions are simpler and the FREDders much more enthusiastic.
 It might be an idea to work on something else first (like a 4-5 mission mini-campaign) and then move on to mercs. At the rate new people work I doubt it would take more than a couple of months to do that which would give you some more time to get your house in order. Basically what I'm saying is don't feel you have to grab hold now or miss the boat. I've seen newbies write a 4-5 mission mini-campaign in a couple of weeks :D

Basically what I'm saying that I'd like to try something simple first and then move on to more advanced stuff like Mercs. Of course what we could do is simply work on the first contract as a mini-campaign/demo. That would really solve all my problems with using Mercs (well except for people saying where are the SHIVANS!!1111 ) :D

Quote
Originally posted by Ghostavo
My advice would be to let FREDders choose between FRED2 and a not buggy but current version of FRED_Open.


That would be 3.5.5 :) Never had any problems with it at all. So anyway I think we're all agreed on the problem of which version of FRED to use :) Remember that as the FREDders learn more they may wish to go back and improve their missions later using more recent versions (for instance so that they can use LS's nebulae). It's not like we're talking about a permanent choice here :)
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Xelion on August 27, 2004, 08:06:29 am
Its a great Idea Karajorma :yes:.

Some ideas, if this is going to work successfully and in a way that it can be beneficial to everyone it needs to be well organised. I would recommend using PHP for the entire site and having a very basic registration system,

Then the user would go through a form thats asks for specific information, like,

Of course there could be other info but only if its required.

I also had an idea of what ShadowWolf_IH has come up with. You could have a section thats split into two with: Fs/Fs2 era (like Goober5000 said) and then have a missions/campaign section in each. From there each mission/campaign could contain storyline information, mission count and whether its been taken, of course you'd have a limit of how many one user can sign up for, so not everything has been taken up.

The best way to make this work is too make it as simple, modular and well organised as possible whilst making the project as open as possible as well. If theres one thing noobs don't like is not having the option of choosing themselves what they want.

I would only recommend having Fs/Fs2 to start off with for FREDers but perhaps later it would be worthwhile to have options open such as Inferno, TBP, WC, TAP, etc.

Quote
Originally posted by aldo_14
Oh, and we need a voice actors thread where people can register willingness to be,well, a voice actor.

Thats another thread altogether I think :D


Quote
Originally posted by ShadowWolf_IH
contract

I don't think 'contract' is a suitable word because it sounds improper and too serious its something you use for a business deal :)


Quote
Originally posted by karajorma
we don't have to explain how to beam-free-all for one thing

You won't have to if the FREDer reads the help files that came along with the game :nervous:

Quote
Originally posted by JR2000Z
If everybody in the community jumps in, we could have up to 2,113 new missions.

:lol:

Quote
Originally posted by Pilot Of The US
New campaigns for FS2 vanilla might also be a good idea, coz ive had lots of issues with FS2 open, prolly coz i got a slow/crappy comp.

Karajorma this is why Fred2 Vanilla must stay a open as an option even though emphasizing Fred2 3.5.5 is a good idea. For example 'Pilot Of The US' may have a slow computer, but may become a very good FREDer and thats why :) its good to also promote the use of the original FRED. :D

Well thats it I wish you Good luck in your Quest :yes:.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Ransom on August 27, 2004, 08:19:04 am
Quote
Originally posted by karajorma
1. Any Shivans involved? Newbies love shivans and they may be a little uninterested in an untested idea revolving around a shivanless campaign.

If we say there can be Shivans, suddenly every mission has Shivans. If we say no Shivans, suddenly there are no missions. How awkward. A solution might be to say each mini-campaign is flown by a different pilot, so these different pilots could be in completely different parts of the galaxy where there are/aren't any Shivans. But I'm not sure if that's a workable idea or not.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: JR2000Z on August 27, 2004, 09:13:25 am
How about fighting against the NTF? Volition never went into detail about the battles in the Sirius and Regulus. Plus if your fighing Shivans, your most likely going to be fighting them in the nebula. And that's always a pain to test.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Kosh on August 27, 2004, 09:18:04 am
I voted for option 1. I would especially hate to see Hidden Terror die because it doesn't have any FREDders.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: karajorma on August 27, 2004, 09:36:42 am
Quote
Originally posted by Xelion
Its a great Idea Karajorma :yes:.

Some ideas, if this is going to work successfully and in a way that it can be beneficial to everyone it needs to be well organised. I would recommend using PHP for the entire site and having a very basic registration system,
  • Username
  • Password
  • Email

Then the user would go through a form thats asks for specific information, like,
  • Fred Version being used
  • Skill Level
  • Etc...

Of course there could be other info but only if its required.[/B]


 If the idea takes off I don't mind doing that but I'd rather get working on this quickly and worry about the nuts and bolts later once we've done some testing to see what works and what doesn't.

For now I was simply thinking of having each mission submitted for vetting in the FS2 Campaigns forum. It's pretty quiet in there anyway and If I get everyone to start each topic with [Newbie Campaign Project] or whatever we call ourselves we shouldn't interfere too much with the rest of HLP.

To be honest I'd prefer to keep this on HLP as much as possible. Since the death of the VBB no one talks about FRED much and even talking about the simple stuff gets people in the mood to FRED.


Quote
Originally posted by Xelion
I also had an idea of what ShadowWolf_IH has come up with. You could have a section thats split into two with: Fs/Fs2 era (like Goober5000 said) and then have a missions/campaign section in each. From there each mission/campaign could contain storyline information, mission count and whether its been taken, of course you'd have a limit of how many one user can sign up for, so not everything has been taken up.


We've done something on the MG team and the system worked quite well. I'd be more than happy to do something similar here.


Quote
Originally posted by Xelion
The best way to make this work is too make it as simple, modular and well organised as possible whilst making the project as open as possible as well. If theres one thing noobs don't like is not having the option of choosing themselves what they want.

I would only recommend having Fs/Fs2 to start off with for FREDers but perhaps later it would be worthwhile to have options open such as Inferno, TBP, WC, TAP, etc.


I agree. If the project is successful I have no objections to doing mods further down the line but for the time being I'd like to keep everything as simple as possible. I also agree with you about making it so that newbies have as much choice as possible about what they want to do.

Quote
Originally posted by Xelion
I don't think 'contract' is a suitable word because it sounds improper and too serious its something you use for a business deal :)


I think he means contract in the same way as a hitman takes a contract :) It's a fairly common usage for the word in mercenary circles :)

Quote
Originally posted by Xelion
Karajorma this is why Fred2 Vanilla must stay a open as an option even though emphasizing Fred2 3.5.5 is a good idea. For example 'Pilot Of The US' may have a slow computer, but may become a very good FREDer and thats why :) its good to also promote the use of the original FRED. :D

Well thats it I wish you Good luck in your Quest :yes:.


At the moment I'm mainly interested in seeing what kind of support there is for the idea. I'm actually quite surprised by the overwhelming support it's gotten. I thought I might need to do a lot more convincing of people that it was worth trying :)

I think it's getting to the point where it's worth seeing the number of people who'd want to use retail rather than FS2_Open. It's mostly down to whether your computer runs FS2_Open or not though as FRED2_Open isn't significantly more complicated.

If lots of people want to use FRED2 we'll run two mini-campaigns at the same time. If only a few do we'll put them to work on single missions for Mercs.

Quote
Originally posted by Kosh
I voted for option 1. I would especially hate to see Hidden Terror die because it doesn't have any FREDders.


I'd hardly classify Hidden Terror as a newbie campaign though :D That said some of the graduates from this project will probably be happy to work on the projects like HT that are on the brink.

Quote
Originally posted by JR2000Z
How about fighting against the NTF? Volition never went into detail about the battles in the Sirius and Regulus. Plus if your fighing Shivans, your most likely going to be fighting them in the nebula. And that's always a pain to test.


That was one of my ideas for a campaign. It has the advantage of letting the newbies play with the Colossus, something they should probably get out of their system as fast as possible anyway ;)
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Cyker on August 27, 2004, 12:48:46 pm
The problem with FRED'ing is that it is actually quite  lot more involved than many newbies realise.
When I made missions for XvT I could bang them out quite quickly because XvTEd was very simple and frankly there wasn't a great deal of stuff you could do with it anyway.

A lot of people come in with a great story idea and have this grand vision to make a 40-mission campaign arc that tells the story, and it's these ones that usually die off :(
Just trying to make a 10-mission campaign takes a damn lot of time, espescially if you try and do anything creative with s-exps ;)

The trick seems to be breaking it down into small bite-sized chunks... :)
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: ShadowWolf_IH on August 27, 2004, 03:58:51 pm
Contract.....the business agreement between the Mercenary (player), and the Employer.  

Shivans?  Come on this is me we are talking about...i was rooting for Vader both times he fought luke, i love bad guys ;).  Actually, yeah the shivans appear later in the campaign.  I won't say more than that.

I do have another idea......what about a straight from the hip campaign to wet the whistles?  What do i mean?  I mean ITHOV.  I have the files and had planned on finishing it.  If Top Ace would be in agreement, i would be more than happy to team up with him while we let the new guys finish it.  

As far as Mercs goes.....it's actually more simple than a big campaign.  I give them parameters, and as long as the story they come up stays inside those parameters, we are Go.

Anyway...just some ideas and clarifications.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: TopAce on August 27, 2004, 04:47:24 pm
ITHOV has some hard missions. But we can make it simpler if we disregard the original plot(written by a guy nicknamed Thor). I see no obstacle we couldn't ignore some of the plot points since Thor doesn't seem to ever return. So, what do I have to do?
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: karajorma on August 27, 2004, 06:03:33 pm
Okay. Since everyone seems happy with the idea I think it's time to start getting things underway. I've got some momentum going on this at the moment and I'd like to see things starting while this is a new idea :D

I'm going to make a new thread for campaign ideas. Basically I want to see any campaign ideas for a mini-campaign 5-10 missions long. After everyone has chewed the fat for another day on those ideas I'l pick one or two and we'll start assigning missions and signing up newbies.

Anyway the campaigns thread is now at http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php/topic,26535.0.html

I'm calling the project the NCP (Newbie Campaign Project) for the time being. Anyone with a better idea is welcome to pipe up since I don't much like it :D

TopAce : If what's left of ITHOV fits into the description I've stated above post an outline of the campaign to the campaign ideas thread and I'll consider it along with all the other ideas.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: TopAce on August 28, 2004, 04:17:40 am
I doubt it would be a closed staff-only project, so I will post the ITHOV plot to public. Do not expect it within seconds, I have some other work to do before.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: karajorma on August 28, 2004, 08:42:31 am
No one has a better project title than Newbie Campaign Project? Seriously? I thought I'd be inundated with suggestions ;)
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: TopAce on August 28, 2004, 09:29:22 am
I suggest (The) FREDing Training Project or (The) Training Project for Beginner FREDers.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Ransom on August 28, 2004, 09:37:37 am
It's very descriptive. It's better than 'The Campaign Project With Newbies In It' or 'The Campaign Made By Newbies Project'. I can't really think of any others that even make sense apart from something like 'FRED Academy' or 'Toadstool Filled With Napalm'.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: TopAce on August 28, 2004, 09:51:32 am
FRED Academy, :yes:
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Singh on August 28, 2004, 10:30:10 am
Quote
Originally posted by TopAce
FRED Academy, :yes:


Gets my vote! :yes:
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Gloriano on August 28, 2004, 11:25:49 am
:yes: well that works but  works too NFCP works too actually
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: TopAce on August 28, 2004, 11:58:34 am
The Newbie FREDing Campaign Project may sound a bit scorning for some people.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: karajorma on August 28, 2004, 12:12:35 pm
FRED Academy gets my vote. :)

I'll call it that from now on unless someone suggests something even cooler :D
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: TopAce on August 28, 2004, 12:15:58 pm
The Official Hard Light Productions Rookie FreeSpace Mission Designer's Campaign.

Does it make any sense? :nervous:
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Ransom on August 28, 2004, 12:40:05 pm
But... but... but I liked Toadstool Filled With Napalm :(

What about 'Norman Barfsworthy And The Amazing Technicolour Newbilicious FRED Mobile'? It's in technicolour and it's amazing! How could it go wrong? Sequel titles could include 'Norman Barfsworthy Eats Pie Occasionally (Starring Fred R. Open)' and 'Who Is Norman Barfsworthy And What Is He Doing With That Firetruck?'

(Hooray, I'm useful! I'm having a wonderful time! *clacks claws*)
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Goober5000 on August 28, 2004, 01:16:21 pm
I'd change NCP slightly to "The Newbie Campaign" (which curiously sounds like a sequel to Deus Ex Machina).  But FRED Academy gets my vote too. :)
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Gloriano on August 28, 2004, 02:18:53 pm
FRED Communist Academy :nervous: :D J/K

FA sounds very good maybe HLPFA?
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: TopAce on August 28, 2004, 02:21:42 pm
FRED Proving Grounds?
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: ShadowWolf_IH on August 29, 2004, 12:50:51 am
how about "Fred" which stands for "Freespace Rookie Education Department"

I daresay that fredding isn't the only thing that they will be learning.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: TopAce on August 29, 2004, 04:44:15 am
The more ideas come the more will beat my (The) FREDing Training Project. The FreeSpace Rookie Education Department is creative, but still doesn't beat the FRED Academy. Furthermore, the FreeSpace Rookie Education Department doesn't reveal it is about modding, not flying techniques or mission hints.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Xelion on August 29, 2004, 06:30:01 am
Doesn't that spell FREDA if you keep the FRED in.

Heres one, Institute of FREDing :) (IFRED/IF) sounds to applish :ick: though
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Gloriano on August 29, 2004, 06:40:02 am
Quote
Originally posted by ShadowWolf_IH
how about "Fred" which stands for "Freespace Rookie Education Department"



That gets my vote :yes: :yes:
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Pilot Of The US on August 29, 2004, 06:47:49 am
how bout:

- Newbie Mini-Campaigns
- The Newbie FRED Project
- FREDing For Newbies
- Newbies FREDing
- Newbie Campaigns
- Newbies (Hard) At Work
- Missions By Newbies
- CampaignsBy Newbies


meh, take your pick. However i kinda like The FRED Acadamy.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: TopAce on August 29, 2004, 07:28:55 am
Too many Newbies ....
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Pilot Of The US on August 29, 2004, 09:11:35 am
Yeah you're right, might thinkup some more.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Goober5000 on August 29, 2004, 02:45:09 pm
Or The Amalgamated Union of FREDers, Scripters, Campaigners and Other Professional Missions Editing Persons (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php/topic,13677.msg256866.html#msg256866).

From the FRED Guild thread. :) Incidentally, that thread has a bunch of other cool FRED information in it that's worth checking out.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Pilot Of The US on August 29, 2004, 07:35:08 pm
hmmm, it might be wise to abbrieviate that eg. TAUFSCOPMEP, or TAUOFSCAOPMEP. heh....
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: karajorma on August 30, 2004, 06:44:44 am
I think I'm going to have to go with FRED Academy. :)
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: AqueousShadow on August 30, 2004, 01:18:42 pm
Well now...unfortunately, I haven't taken the time to read simply...4 pages of this thread, but let me just say that it piques my interest quite a bit. I DID read the Karajorma's very first post, so I at least know what this is about.

Incidentally, I stumbled across this thread when TopAce posted it for one of our new members, Gai Daigoji, to check out. Now I'd like to say flat out that I love this idea. I've experienced enough to know that any idea like this is worth a good shot because I've been there and done that. Sadly, I was once one of the n00bs with a potential talent for FREDding. However, as time went by and my skills were unnoticed/unprovided for, I found that they dissipated and my interest in this game did as well. I was lucky enough to come back, however, around the time that the SCP was starting. I signed on DatDB, a campaign with high hopes, as a FREDder, not fully understand what I was doing and how I could contribute. Time went by and we thought we were getting the ball rolling. However, the story never finished, and currently, the project is drifting on the line between corporeal and ethereal, almost, if not already, dead. Anyway there to see it grow would be shocked to hear such a great project die. But one of the most notable things I could remember is the fact that we had a bunch of models, anis, weapons, and a very solid story to go by, but there were barely any missions FREDded. I basically had the glory of that little blue and red icon next to my name.

Now, I find this to be a good chance for me to un-n00b myself. Sign me up!
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: magatsu1 on August 30, 2004, 01:25:56 pm
the one thing I hate about FREDing is coming up with scenarios. I could do a few missions, but my work rate is pretty shocking.
(Hey, I work allday 'kay ?)
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: karajorma on August 30, 2004, 01:52:48 pm
Quote
Originally posted by AqueousShadow
Now, I find this to be a good chance for me to un-n00b myself. Sign me up!


Glad to hear you're interested. I'll be starting up a thread for the sign ups in a little bit. I just need to pick a campaign for us all to work on.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Pilot Of The US on August 31, 2004, 01:02:01 am
cool, count me in aswell !
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: mr.WHO on August 31, 2004, 12:01:06 pm
Count me too, it's time to do something for HLP.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: TopAce on August 31, 2004, 12:15:13 pm
Don't remember [BACKSPACE! BACKSPACE! BACKSPACE! BACKSPACE!] forget that I singed up as well.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: karajorma on August 31, 2004, 01:50:08 pm
:) Nice to see the enthusiasm is still there :) I'm currently waiting for Black Wolf to send my his plotline. So don't think the inactivity on the other thread means I've forgotten :)

I'm planning to get the ball rolling on this before the weekend so that I'll have the entire weekend to deal with submissions :)
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: TopAce on August 31, 2004, 02:38:30 pm
School starts tomorrow, I take my Language exams on the 3rd and the 6th, so do not count on any useful help by me this week. I am in my last year, preparing for the A-level exam(called 'Maturity' in Hungary) so my next two semesters are going to be busier than the previous ones. If this thing gets started(FRED Academy), I will only be able to render a mild amount of help. And I have still not mentioned Star Wars Conversion, the Renegade Ressurgence patch and the Journey to Epsilon Pegasi campaigns.

So, eh ... in a word ... I will see what I can do, but do not expect things what I do happen quickly.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Pilot Of The US on September 01, 2004, 12:33:36 am
i can't wait!  :) oh and Singh, you said that you could help out reviewing missions, well could you have a look at my mission. (http://www.geocities.com/hyrulecastleau/The_Shivan_Nutshell.zip)

and sorry if the docking operation takes forever, coz ive got 2 corvettes docking with each other, and sometimes it just doesnt go to plan. :eek2:
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Spicious on September 01, 2004, 02:12:40 am
Quote
Originally posted by Pilot Of The US
coz ive got 2 corvettes docking with each other
It's usually best not to have capital ships trying to dock with each other. Although, it'd probably work pretty well with a custom docking path and dockpoint made specifically for the mission though.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Pilot Of The US on September 01, 2004, 02:22:56 am
Well, yeah you're right. But i think in my mission ive got an "Iceni dock path fix" upgrade so that should help with the problems with the docking.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Spicious on September 01, 2004, 02:38:31 am
Even with that, the path will still be designed for a transport. What I meant was a path for a capital ship to use that would result in it not going through the other capital ship and would also line it up and position it well. This sort of thing would still have problems undocking anyway.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Pilot Of The US on September 01, 2004, 03:46:42 am
Yeah, i see what you mean. But ive run through the mission a dozen times and about 3 out of those 12, is where it takes a long time for the ships to dock.

btw, this mission was made for FS2 vanila. Can these new docking paths be implemented for vanila?
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: karajorma on September 03, 2004, 03:50:20 pm
The sign up thread for this little project is now up.

http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php/topic,26744.0.html

All the newbie FREDders should take a look :)
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Pilot Of The US on September 03, 2004, 08:32:12 pm
yay! *goes to sign up*
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Black Wolf on September 03, 2004, 09:55:01 pm
Quote
Originally posted by Pilot Of The US
Yeah, i see what you mean. But ive run through the mission a dozen times and about 3 out of those 12, is where it takes a long time for the ships to dock.

btw, this mission was made for FS2 vanila. Can these new docking paths be implemented for vanila?


In a word, yes, though you have to make sure if you're downloading fixed dockpoint pofs that they're not high poly versions designed for HTL.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Pilot Of The US on September 03, 2004, 10:02:31 pm
oh i see. Well the mission is pretty old, so i dont think i'll be updating it anyway. It was just a little something to see how it would be to have the Iceni captured.

 However for a twist, i made some story about how the shivans had built/captured/aquired infomation from Bosh, etc..... But the problem is that the Iceni doesnt look like it has been made by the shivans.
Title: Newbie campaigns and FRED
Post by: Kie99 on September 04, 2004, 08:01:07 am
EDIT: Sorry, wrong topic