Poll

Should we nudge new people in the direction of a specific campaign?

Hell Yes. I'm tired of seeing campaigns die
28 (80%)
Hell No. We might scare them out of the community if we seem too draconian
2 (5.7%)
Maybe. I've got some ideas on how you should change your proposal (post below)
5 (14.3%)

Total Members Voted: 35

Voting closed: August 26, 2004, 12:36:03 pm

Author Topic: Newbie campaigns and FRED  (Read 8947 times)

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Offline Ransom

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Newbie campaigns and FRED
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.

 

Offline Pilot Of The US

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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.....

 

Offline Zarax

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Newbie campaigns and FRED
FRED 3.5.5 has the best balance IMHO...
The Best is Yet to Come

 

Offline karajorma

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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 :)
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Offline TopAce

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Newbie campaigns and FRED
FRED_Open is not more complicated, even for unexperienced users. Believe me. I used both quite a lot. Especially Retail FRED2.
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Offline Ghostavo

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Newbie campaigns and FRED
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.
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Offline karajorma

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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 :)
« Last Edit: August 27, 2004, 07:55:37 am by 340 »
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Offline Xelion

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Newbie campaigns and FRED
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.

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:.

 

Offline Ransom

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Newbie campaigns and FRED
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.
« Last Edit: August 27, 2004, 08:21:53 am by 1494 »

 

Offline JR2000Z

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Newbie campaigns and FRED
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.
I finally destoryed the Shivan armada and all I got was this lousy T shirt.

 

Offline Kosh

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Newbie campaigns and FRED
I voted for option 1. I would especially hate to see Hidden Terror die because it doesn't have any FREDders.
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Offline karajorma

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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 ;)
« Last Edit: August 27, 2004, 09:49:16 am by 340 »
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Offline Cyker

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Newbie campaigns and FRED
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... :)

 

Offline ShadowWolf_IH

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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.
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Offline TopAce

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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?
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Offline karajorma

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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.
« Last Edit: August 27, 2004, 06:06:16 pm by 340 »
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Offline TopAce

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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.
My community contributions - Get my campaigns from here.

"Truth" is the opinion of the majority which it can enforce on the minority. Members of the minority have two choices: join the bandwagon or think. Those who do not fall into line will be brutally crushed.
The tools to maintain order are: lies, double standards, and hypocrisy. The most powerful and the most insidious of them is hypocrisy

 

Offline karajorma

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No one has a better project title than Newbie Campaign Project? Seriously? I thought I'd be inundated with suggestions ;)
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Offline TopAce

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I suggest (The) FREDing Training Project or (The) Training Project for Beginner FREDers.
My community contributions - Get my campaigns from here.

"Truth" is the opinion of the majority which it can enforce on the minority. Members of the minority have two choices: join the bandwagon or think. Those who do not fall into line will be brutally crushed.
The tools to maintain order are: lies, double standards, and hypocrisy. The most powerful and the most insidious of them is hypocrisy

 

Offline Ransom

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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'.