Hard Light Productions Forums

Modding, Mission Design, and Coding => The FRED Workshop => Topic started by: Strygon on December 16, 2018, 09:49:22 pm

Title: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: Strygon on December 16, 2018, 09:49:22 pm
(https://i.imgur.com/aF1JbBw.png)
[Note: Textures may change later in development]
What has originally started as just a couple ideas and too much freetime has now developed into a fully focused idea for a Full Conversion Campaign.
Okay fine, Minicampaign. I've planned about 6-7 missions so far.
Anyway, it's definitely not going to be anything masterful, but it's my first serious shot at making a mod and I'm nonetheless gonna give it my all.
Without further ado, let me present you the plot:

The Story

You are a pilot of the 26th Scorpions, a newly-formed Anti-Piracy squadron. It's not as prestigious of a job as being a Navy pilot, but somebody's gotta do the dirty work. And there's lots of that.

With the rapid growth of all nations, protection for freighters has grown really thin at the outer rims of civilisation. Pirate attacks have increased like never before. Small-scale robberies have turned into organised attacks. And it is your job to put an end to those attacks.

What to expect in this mod


If everything goes well, the mod should be ready for release by the end of the first week of January

Progress Report

Here I will periodically update this section on what's already been completed and what hasn't.

Mod Fully Complete

Presumed release date: 31st December/1st January
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: bomb3rman on December 16, 2018, 10:19:34 pm
This sounds nice! Good luck with it!

I'm pretty interested and will be happy to play it once it's out.

https://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=67991.0 (https://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=67991.0)

-> Here you can find a way to create your own backgrounds for the Mainhall etc...
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: Strygon on December 16, 2018, 10:23:21 pm
Much appreciated, bomb3rman. Exactly what I need.
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: HLD_Prophecy on December 16, 2018, 10:41:52 pm
Been waiting for a good total conversion since the Antagonist! Can't wait to see how it goes!  :nod:  Best of luck!
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: Droid803 on December 17, 2018, 12:15:37 am
Is that...a literal boat in space, complete with smokestack and anti fouling paint?  :wtf: Okay.
Best of luck to you in your endeavours (also try applying edgesplit, that big ship looks like it has some smoothing problems on the wings)
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: Strygon on December 17, 2018, 12:19:13 am
Is that...a literal boat in space, complete with smokestack and anti fouling paint?  :wtf: Okay.

Yep, based on my favorite Japanese WW2 Destroyer, the Fubuki-class Special Type Destroyer
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: MitoPL on December 17, 2018, 01:04:52 am
Space Battleship Yamato references?
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: Assassin714 on December 17, 2018, 01:22:29 am
Looks like Starfox style

Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: Strygon on December 21, 2018, 11:32:57 am
(https://i.imgur.com/G4O8ojJ.png)

Group pic of almost all ships in this mod (some are not shown because spoilers n such)

Heya! Quick update post to show the mod ain't dead. I've been doing a hell of a lot of progress lately, with Mission 1 nearing its completion already, far earlier than expected.
Don't expect anything now but it is possible I might be able to push this mod outta the door before schedule.

Most of the work I've managed to do over the last couple of days was:
-Give one of the capital ships a better texture
-Add a new freighter, the Mamiya-class you see in the center.
-Fix a mountain of bugs while overall removing clutter and optimizing bits here and there.
-Fix the bugs that were caused by fixing the previous ones (you might've seen my 192 errors pic in the screencap thread)
-Fiddle with voice effects, but I probably won't be able to VA this mod

Also, I'll be using Nyctaeus' (I hope I spelled that right) FractalSpace skybox pack to liven up the surroundings a bit. Thank you Nyctaeus for creating the pack by the way.
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: MitoPL on December 21, 2018, 02:19:17 pm
I guess improving the detail and epicness of the vessels is going to be the first thing to do after beta testing, release and bugfixing :P
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: Strygon on December 21, 2018, 03:31:36 pm
Guess so, I'm admittedly complete garbage at modelling and even worse at texturing.
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: Colonol Dekker on December 21, 2018, 05:09:53 pm
I look forward to this.   Please don't share your design doc ;)
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: HLD_Prophecy on December 21, 2018, 06:34:17 pm
Don't be afraid to subcontract out your work! I think you could find someone who'd at least walk you through texturing if they can't do it themselves.  :nod:
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: Strygon on December 21, 2018, 06:37:26 pm
Don't be afraid to subcontract out your work! I think you could find someone who'd at least walk you through texturing if they can't do it themselves.  :nod:

Thank you, but I don't want to be a burden on anyone and cause unnecessary work for anyone but myself.

Although I might consider asking for help in texturing in... future projects
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: Nyctaeus on December 22, 2018, 07:25:54 am
I don't want to discourage anyone from trying, but there are very few dedicated texture artists here and all of them are busy 99% of the time. Reverse-engineering textures by other people is much more viable option.

Take your time. Rush is the worst enemy of mod developer :P. Play everything 2-3 more times for bughunt. We're patient community. Lack of technical problems of all kinds is more important than fulfilling any deadlines. There is only one true deadline on HLP and it's: When it's done :]
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: Strygon on December 24, 2018, 11:16:51 am
ALL SHIPS ARE FINALLY DONE!

Now all there is left to do is finishing the missions.

Mission 1 is already fully completed and Mission 2 and 3 only need some additional finetuning and adjustments.

I've also had some fighting with weapon balance over the recent days, but I think they're all well balanced now.
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: Strygon on December 27, 2018, 04:18:31 pm
Missions are more than halfway done, but I may not be able to get a good Mainhall or some good menus going in time.
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: Nightmare on December 27, 2018, 04:55:22 pm
Several mods use rather generic mainhalls, for example ones with all buttons located at the top. There are rather few custom button designs anyway, and the table is identical too, so the only thing different is the mainhall itself, the rest can directly be imported from other mods. So unless you want something really specific, all it takes is a pic, with button-part of the screen seperated by a line. Even I managed to get that done, and I have no clue about graphics.
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: bomb3rman on December 28, 2018, 08:37:44 am
Several mods use rather generic mainhalls, for example ones with all buttons located at the top. There are rather few custom button designs anyway, and the table is identical too, so the only thing different is the mainhall itself, the rest can directly be imported from other mods. So unless you want something really specific, all it takes is a pic, with button-part of the screen seperated by a line. Even I managed to get that done, and I have no clue about graphics.

I can second that. If you wish I could send you my Main hall table for FaF 2, you might only want to change the image.
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: Strygon on December 28, 2018, 12:37:08 pm
Several mods use rather generic mainhalls, for example ones with all buttons located at the top. There are rather few custom button designs anyway, and the table is identical too, so the only thing different is the mainhall itself, the rest can directly be imported from other mods. So unless you want something really specific, all it takes is a pic, with button-part of the screen seperated by a line. Even I managed to get that done, and I have no clue about graphics.

I can second that. If you wish I could send you my Main hall table for FaF 2, you might only want to change the image.

I'd be very grateful for that, bomb3rman.
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: bomb3rman on December 28, 2018, 04:34:22 pm
I'll do it tomorrow, when I'm back in my room where my hdd is.

It's kind of stolen from Exile, but I think the placement of the buttons (more bottom than top) is being used by several mods.
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: bomb3rman on December 29, 2018, 02:31:24 pm
There you go:

http://www.mediafire.com/file/p3a007w8w2hq969/New.zip/file (http://www.mediafire.com/file/p3a007w8w2hq969/New.zip/file)

Once unzipped, put the files in the respective folders. The buttons are important, you just might want to change the image and its name, it's still from my mod.

EDIT: And you might want to change the +Door Descrition in the .tbl file ;)
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: Strygon on December 29, 2018, 03:19:13 pm
Thank you very much.
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: Strygon on December 29, 2018, 07:07:11 pm
Facing minor issues with pacing, misison number has been knocked down to 6.

Also I may not be able to get it done by the 31st, but I'll try to get it done as fast as possible nonetheless.
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: Nightmare on December 29, 2018, 07:18:58 pm
Also I may not be able to get it done by the 31st, but I'll try to get it done as fast as possible nonetheless.

Just take as much time as it needs. :)

you know what happens with people that don't test.. ;)
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: Colonol Dekker on December 30, 2018, 07:08:47 am
Enjoy the holiday season and have fun making the project as right as you feel it needs to be.  Take as much time as you need. :yes:
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: Strygon on December 30, 2018, 07:17:51 am
Enjoy the holiday season and have fun making the project as right as you feel it needs to be.  Take as much time as you need. :yes:

I'd love to enjoy the holidays as is, but I'm currently in a weird state where the only thing I can actually do is work on the mod.
I've been working day and night, because I don't want to cut any corners.

All missions are complete. Two of them need a tiny bit of finetuning, but I can start working on interface and Intel soon, then get to playtesting, final adjustments, and then, finally, public release.
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: Strygon on December 30, 2018, 01:55:31 pm
Finetuning has been completed, I've made a small stress testing run of my mod and ironed some bigger issues out. All that is left now is beta testing.

Speaking of, is anyone up for testing it? I've got a testing build up and running on Knossos.
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: Nyctaeus on February 12, 2019, 07:14:52 pm
I promised a review. I'm not good at writing coherent reviews, so I think I just share some feelings. May be a bit messy :P

I like ambitious projects and deep storylines, but I also enjoy simpler things. OCaD belong to the second category, with fluid gameplay and intuitive objectives. I don't like situation such as having no idea what to do despite directives and stuff. First interation of BP: Tenebra is a nightmare in this case. Missions may be challenging of course, but their mechanics should be clear for players. OCaD fulfill this point well.
Spoiler:
The only fail I had was hacking satellites mission. At first I wasn't sure if enemy fighters are going to scan me, or they ignore me or whatever. I flew too close, engaged, destroyed one wing... Than I realized I screwed up, so I replayed and this time I circled around enemy wings. Maybe some messages warning about proximity to enemy wing would help?

Gosh... Move the hangarbay of Centurion or make it bigger :P. I had no idea how to scan this thing, so eventually I just glided into the hangarbay recess facing forwards. I almost died. Don't get me wrong. That scanning was one of the most interesting scanning mission I ever played, along with one nebula recon mission in Scroll. Whole concept of doing scans on glide is appealing to me. Some intercepted chatter of rebel ships around would significantly enchance that part.

I wasn't bored playing OCaD. I was flying different crafts, each one with it's own soul. Although your mod is quite minimalistic in terms of modpack, I didn't feel like I'm shooting the same things over and over again.
Spoiler:
Gameplay is faster than standard FS flying model, but not too fast at least. I was skeptical about autoaim at first glance, than I realized it balances lack of missiles on some ships well. Still I think that every playable craft should be equipped in at least some token, Tempest-like dumbfires.
Overally missions were well-balanced. I had to do some maneuvering to achieve my goals, but also I never felt overwhelmed by neverending waves of enemy ships. OCaD was... Relaxing in terms of gameplay.

Original universe is a challenge. Ship design mixed music and nebulae created healthy and fresh experience. I would like to know more about the lore, our faction, systems and everything else when I play anything. Command briefings are powerful tool useful for worldbuilding, so next time gimme something more to read :P.

In terms of bugs, there were very few and I don't remember anything significant. Nothing game-breaking, and some of them are likely to be fixed by this day. No popping errors, no broken missions, everything was working correctly.

Spoiler:
The only thing that bothered me was the last mission. I just fly and shoot more and more fighters lashing pirate command ship with stream of bullets and missiles from time to time, while pirate warship just stand idle... Same as our ships. Gimme more action! Make our homeship attacking the Centurion. Add some dramatic maneuvers and exchange of fire between them. Maybe hold the pirate cruiser, and deploy it to attack our battleship when Centurion is almost dead? Dunno... People expect some epic **** from the last mission. And ehh, the Gladius died so stupidly...
Overally I found OCaD as nice, first project of aspiring modder. Something fresh, original and introducing new setting with plenty of stories to tell. OCaD is a good foundation for future projects and relaxing experience on it's own. Perfect for some long evening, when you just want to drink a beer or two, and shoot some stuff.
Title: Re: [IN PROGRESS] Operation: Cloak and Dagger
Post by: Strygon on February 13, 2019, 01:04:25 am
Glad to hear that you liked it, Nyctaeus. I've already begun work on a new project set in the same universe, describing things from a different faction's perspective, so I hope you'll stay tuned for that.
And this time I'm not gonna rush the last mission like before.