Author Topic: 2013 HLP Modding Contest. Cash Prizes!  (Read 25587 times)

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2013 HLP Modding Contest. Cash Prizes!
Calling all Modders! If you think you can put together a decent Freespace ship, well now's the time to bust out your dusty old 3d program, scrub the rust off your image editor and tighten up the nuts and bolts of your PCS2 install because those ships could make you some cold hard cash. It's contest time!

Rule 4 has changed - please re-read.

The Details:
The contest will be split into categories based on species - Terrans, Vasudans and Shivans will all get individual awards, along with an overall winner from any species. All ship types are acceptable, from drones and fighters to supercaps and mega installations, as are ships from all FS eras (Pre Great War to Post Capella). Judging will be based not just on aesthetics, but also on creativity, backstory, ingame balance, technical quality, the use of SCP features, in game features and value to campaign makers.

If we get enough entries (10 or more) a "People's choice" award will be activated, wherein HLP members will be allowed to choose their favourite ship from among the runners up by means of a forum poll. If we get a large number of entries (20+), this will be further split - probably into fighters and bomber / capships or on a species by species basis, depending on the makeup of the entries.

To enter, post a release thread on the FS Modding board within the contest period. Your ship will be added to the list below. If it isn't added in a timely fashion, PM a global mod or admin, and it'll get added.

Judges will be announced in the near future, as will details on the weighting for various features.

Entries close @ 23:59:59 GMT, 30th Spetember 2013

The Prizes:

Best Overall Model: $100 US
Best Terran, Vasudan, Shivan model: $50 US x 3
Best Newcomer: $50 US
People's Choice $30 US

Winners will also receive the much coveted HLP Gold Star! Recognition and glamour - the ultimate reward!

NB - Further categories may be added if anyone is willing to kick in additional funding.

The Rules:
  • Multiple entires in the same or different categories (i.e. species) are acceptable and encouraged, however, no individual may win more than one major prize (i.e. the "Best Overall Model" and "Best Terran, Vasudan, Shivan model". However, the people's choice prize, should it be activated, will be open to all runners up, including unsuccessful ships from previous winners. No individual may win more than one people's choice prize should multiple categories be activated.
  • Ships must be new - no previously released models will be accepted. Models previously completed but unreleased are acceptable if released during the competition period (ie. 25-06-2013 - 30-09-2013).
  • Models released as part of a campaign release are not acceptable - ships must be released individually prior to any bundled release to be eligible to win.
  • The purpose of the contest is to increase the pool of available Freespace mods for campaign designers to make use of. Therefore, all entires must be released publicly, and it is a requirement of entry that all entries include some form of written license granting and guaranteeing that non-exclusive right into the future. As long as access and free use (for at least the purpose of non-commercial FS2_Open usage) is made clear, no specific license is a requirement. This may take the form of a document included as part of the download, or a statement from the author in the release thread.
  • Ships must be original - i.e. HTLs of Volition ships are not acceptable, nor are recreations of models from external sources (e.g. films, TV shows etc.) Ships should be designed for the Freespace universe and should not be obviously, identifiably intended for other universes (such as Star Wars, Battlestar Galactica, etc. etc.).
  • HTLing community made ships from a retail standard to a modern is acceptable, as long as the original author does not object. If ambiguous, ships will be dealt with on a case by case basis - if you are uncertain, contact a judge before commencing your project.
  • Ships must be functional in FSO with the latest mediaVPs installed, and include at least a LoD0 model (pof), a diffuse map (if not utilizing existing tile maps) and a table file. Points will be deducted for bugs, and added for completeness (e.g. debris, LoDs, normal maps etc.) Ships which cannot be made to work in FSO will be disqualified.
  • Ships utilizing new features such as new weapon types, scripted capabilities etc. are acceptable, as long as all necessary files are included with the release.
  • Teamups are acceptable, however only one prize will be sent out. Further splitting will be up to the individuals on the team. It is encouraged that weighting for prize money be worked out ahead of time.
  • Prizes will be sent out by PayPal. Arrangements can be made with contest winners to vary this (e.g. prizes by way of vouchers to online stores, transfer into accounts etc.), however all moneys must be transferred electronically - posting cash or cheques will not be undertaken.
  • Rules are subject to limited change following community consultation.

Notes on the "Best Newcomer" category

  • Eligibility for this prize is open to all individuals who have never released a model before on HLP. In order to confirm entry in this category rather than one of the "senior" categories, mention this on your release thread.
  • The model must conform with all above rules.
    • Best newcomer models are eligible for the main prize, but not for the individual species prizes. Best Newcomer models are eligible for the People's Choice prize, should it be activated.
    • Best newcomer models will be judged according to the same criteria as all other entries.
    • We are aware of the potential for abuse in this category, and request a degree of self regulation from entrants. Although technically open to anyone who has never released a model before, we would ask that those who may have considerable modelling/texturing experience away from HLP would consider the purpose of this prize and enter themselves in one of the other categories. We reserve the right to "promote" to the more senior categories if it is determined that the system is being abused.
« Last Edit: June 28, 2013, 03:07:48 am by Black Wolf »

 

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Modding Contest Judges and Criteria
Judges have been finalized! They are:
  • Admiral MS
  • Black Wolf
  • FIZ
  • mjn.mixael


Thanks to all those who volunteered - this panel of four should provide us with a wide range of opinions, perspectives and levels of experience, and hopefully represents a wide cross section of the community.

Following consultation amongst the four judges, the following rules have been determined for the allocation of points.

Please note that the descriptions are not intended to be exhaustive or prescriptive. Rather, they are intended to give judges and contestants an idea of the sort of factors that should be considered in each category. Individual judges will assign points according to these criteria as well as others of their own criteria on a per model basis.

    Visual considerations         
    • Model (Aesthetic): 15 points
      How does the model look? Does it fit established aesthetics for the species? Is it interesting, eye catching, memorable? Does it look like something that might exist in the real world?
    • Model (Technical): 10 points
      Is the model optimized? Is detail density fairly regular across the mesh?
    • Texture (Aesthetic): 15 points
      How does the texture look (on the model)? Does it complement the model? Does it fit established aesthetics for the species? Does it look real, or is it overly cartoony or "drawn" rather than "built"?
    • Texture (Technical): 5 points
      Is the texture well made? If UVed, does the UV map have good projection, no stretches or strong variances in pixel desity.
    • Visual Overall: 5 points
      Does the model integrate well with the texture (AO baked, hull lines following ship contours etc.). Do the shine and diffuse maps complement rather than clash?
             
    Technical Considerations
    • Bug Free?: 10 points
      Minor bugs, like a UV error or a badly chosen tech room view distance might knock a point off. Major bugs, like non functional turrets or crashes during docking would knock many points off. Ships that crash FSO would be excluded entirely - some degree of stability is an entry requirement.
    • Completeness: 10 points
      Full marks here would include Lod0, three (well made) smaller LoDs, debris, -destroyed submodels, a fully fleshed out table file, diffuse, shine, glow and normal maps and a full set of pof data (including subsystems, dockpoints, paths etc.)
             
    Gameplay Considerations
    • Balance: 5 points
      Does the model compare well to [V] or other mod ships of similar class?
    • Value to FREDders and Players: 10 points
      Is the model interesting, or unique in some way? Does it have broad usefulness for campaign builders? Does it feel like a valuable addition to existing Volition fleet, or (better yet) the community's existing high quality modset? Critically, is it fun to fight with or against?

    Other Considerations
    • Bonus points: 15 points
      These are additional points to recognize extra work not covered in the previous categories that deserve recognition such as (but not limited to) high quality backstory/tech description, unique new weapon types, overall model complexity (e.g. destroyers vs. fighters), usage of advanced SCP features etc. etc. These points will be allocated entirely at the judge’s discretion.

    Judges Final Mark: 10 points
    • This is a subjective grade out of ten given by the judge. It is not an average of the previous results, but represents the judge's opinion about the mode as an overall product.

    Scoring and Associated Rules
    • Final marks will be presented as two numbers, and represent the total score and the total judges score, i.e. out of a maximum possible score of 400-40.
    • Judges scores are final.
    • Scoring will be based on the first submitted version of the model, except in cases where community or creator testing discovers bugs. In this situation, the creator will have one week from the initial release to adjust the ship to fix the bug. However, adjustments to the score related to the new version will only apply in the scoring category associated with bug-free models.
    • Prizes will be allocated based solely on the first figure (out of 400), except in the event of a tie, where the ship with the highest judges score will prevail.
    • In the event of a tie in both Total score and Judges score, each judge’s total score (i.e. out of 400) for the two vessels will be compared, and the higher scoring ship will be allocated one point per judge, i.e. a score out of four.
    • If this final step does not produce a winner (i.e. a 2-2 split) the two ships will be considered equal, and both entrants will win the category and associated prize. In the case of the major prize, if the two ships are of the same species, then this will be given in place of the second place species prize. If they are of separate species, then the second place species prize will not be affected.
    • In the event of certain highly unlikely circumstances (3 way ties, precisely equal total scores from one judge for two tied ship or other unforeseen circumstances) a decision regarding prize allocations will be made in consultation with the winners.

    NB - we are well aware of previous HLP contests that have failed to deliver results in a timely fashion. To avoid this in this instance, any judges that do not complete their duties on time will be removed from consideration, and points will be allocated based on the decisions of the remaining judges.
    « Last Edit: July 02, 2013, 08:50:50 pm by Black Wolf »

     

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    Modding Contest Entrants
    Current Entrants:

    Terran:
    Vasudan:
    Shivan:
    Newcomer:
    « Last Edit: October 14, 2013, 08:30:07 pm by Black Wolf »

     

    Offline Klaustrophobia

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    Re: 2013 HLP Modding Contest. Cash Prizes!
    i volunteer for people's choice judge. :P

     
    i would be willing to be a judge, unfortunately i'm not really qualified on any technical aspects of modding. 
    I like to stare at the sun.

     
    Re: 2013 HLP Modding Contest. Cash Prizes!
    Question RE: rule 5, "Ships must be original - i.e. HTLs of Volition ships are not acceptable."

    Would a ship that was based on a Volition ship be acceptable? Say... a fighter that shares some similarities with a Perseus but also with significant changes?

    Related: does anybody need an idea for a fighter based on a Perseus but also with significant changes for their entry?

    But I think this is really a cool thing to do, I'm sure we'll see some really cool stuff.

     
    Re: 2013 HLP Modding Contest. Cash Prizes!
    Lovely timing, my major school graphics project is just about to start. Will have to see what I can come up with.

     

    Offline MatthTheGeek

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    Re: 2013 HLP Modding Contest. Cash Prizes!
    Shouldn't that be named "Ship Creation contest" instead ? Modding covers a whole lot more than that and that title definitely confused the **** out of me when I read what it was about. A huge part of the community here are modders that don't have any of the skills required to compete here. FREDers, scripters, tablers...

    It also seems you are restricting yourself to Terran/Vasudan/Shivan ships, which is a huge mistake imho. If that was not your intention, it might be a good idea to make it clearer that all kind of ships are accepted.
    People are stupid, therefore anything popular is at best suspicious.

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    Offline Black Wolf

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    Re: 2013 HLP Modding Contest. Cash Prizes!
    Question RE: rule 5, "Ships must be original - i.e. HTLs of Volition ships are not acceptable."

    Would a ship that was based on a Volition ship be acceptable? Say... a fighter that shares some similarities with a Perseus but also with significant changes?

    Well, we'd assess it on a case by case basis, but the way you're describing it sounds like it would probably be OK.

    The purpose of the contest is to promote the creation of new, high quality ships (particularly in the Vasudan and Shivan fleet) for campaigns to make use of. HTLs of [V] ships are disallowed because, while cool and often to a really high standard of quality, they don't advance that goal; the total pool of ships available to modders to use in campaigns doesn't increase. What you're describing sounds like it would be different enough to the Perseus that it would represent an increase to the total pool, and so would be a valid entry.

    Shouldn't that be named "Ship Creation contest" instead ? Modding covers a whole lot more than that and that title definitely confused the **** out of me when I read what it was about. A huge part of the community here are modders that don't have any of the skills required to compete here. FREDers, scripters, tablers...

    Arguably yes - it was originally going to be a "Modelling" contest, but I wanted to emphasize that it was about producing an ingame ship - i.e. a textured and converted model, rather than just a mesh. "Ship Creation" is probably a better name - we'll remember that for next time.

    It also seems you are restricting yourself to Terran/Vasudan/Shivan ships, which is a huge mistake imho. If that was not your intention, it might be a good idea to make it clearer that all kind of ships are accepted.

    This point came up on IRC - yes, the contest is restricted to Terran, Vasudan and Shivan ships. The reason for this is twofold:
    1. It's much harder to judge ships against one another if there was an "other" category; and
    2. As described above, the aim here is to promote the creation of a pool of modern, high quality ships for campaign builders to make use of. Like it or not, the vast majority of campaigns can make use of Terran, Vasudan and Shivan ships. The same is not true of even well established species like the Nightmares and Ancients, let alone ships from utterly unique species. It's all about getting the maximum utility for the largest number of people out of the products of the contest, and the Terran/Vasudan/Shivan focus will do that.
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    Offline MatthTheGeek

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    Re: 2013 HLP Modding Contest. Cash Prizes!
    Then how do you define "Terran", for example ? Is a Karuna Terran ? Is the Emperor Terran ? Is Aesaar's Diomedes Terran ? Is a Battlestar Terran ?
    People are stupid, therefore anything popular is at best suspicious.

    Mod management tools     -     Wiki stuff!     -     Help us help you

    666maslo666: Releasing a finished product is not a good thing! It is a modern fad.

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    Axem: when you put it like that, i sound like an insane person

    bigchunk1: it's not retarded it's american!
    bigchunk1: ...

    batwota: steele's maneuvering for the coup de gras
    MatthTheGeek: you mispelled grâce
    Awaesaar: grace
    batwota: oh right :P
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    Darius: yes, i like that
    MatthTheGeek: the way you just spelled it it means fat
    Awaesaar: +accent I forgot how to keyboard
    MatthTheGeek: or grease
    Darius: the killing fat!
    Axem: jabba does the coup de gras
    MatthTheGeek: XD
    Axem: bring me solo and a cookie

     
    Re: 2013 HLP Modding Contest. Cash Prizes!
    Ummm....

    I don't seem to remember the winners of the last HLP contest being announced.....from 2005.

    I'm not saying a new contest is a bad idea; just that some loose ends should probably have been tied up, prior to this announcement.

     

    Offline mjn.mixael

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    Re: 2013 HLP Modding Contest. Cash Prizes!
    Then how do you define "Terran", for example ? Is a Karuna Terran ? Is the Emperor Terran ? Is Aesaar's Diomedes Terran ? Is a Battlestar Terran ?

    I would expect that ships modelled directly from other IPs would be disallowed (Battlestar) while ships inspired by other IPs would generally be fair-game or case-by-case. As for what fits as "Terran".. well that's for the judges to decide, I suppose. I'd think the same would hold true for Terran ships as would Shivan and Vasudan. The judges will grant points based on how well the ship fits the category it was submitted under. So, it's probably not a good idea to submit a red/black ship as Vasudan :p. You are right that Terran designs would likely have a lot more leeway though.

    But I don't think we need to split hairs here over it, especially since I suspect you won't be directly entering. (If it came up from someone who wanted to do it... or if you are entering, then we might go deeper. However, as of this discussion it's entirely theoretical. :) ) I also suspect that in 99.9% of the cases.. people have a good idea of what constitutes a ship intended to look 'Terran' or 'designed by humans'.
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    Offline Black Wolf

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    Re: 2013 HLP Modding Contest. Cash Prizes!
    Then how do you define "Terran", for example ? Is a Karuna Terran ? Is the Emperor Terran ? Is Aesaar's Diomedes Terran ? Is a Battlestar Terran ?

    Yes, Yes, Yes, No. I've clarified the rules about external sources and the FS universe. Keep in mind also that "value to campaign makers" is listed as an attribute that will be judged. If someone wanted to enter the Karuna (assuming, for the sake of the hypothetical, that it wasn't invalid due to toher reasons), or another UEF style ship, it would probably be judged slightly lower in that category, but it wouldn't be excluded by any means. Judging for aesthetics may also include a factor like "How well does it fit into the existing fleet?", although that hasn't been decided yet as the judges haven't all been chosen yet. When they are (and I'm hoping that will be sooner rather than later), the criteria will be made public, and people can decide how they want to approach the contest.

    Ultimately, we're going to get some good judges, and I'm confident that any good quality, well made model that will be of use to campaign designers will score very highly. Why not give us the benefit of the doubt for once?

    [EDIT]Ninja'd by Mjn - he has the right idea. :nod:

    Ummm....

    I don't seem to remember the winners of the last HLP contest being announced.....from 2005.

    I'm not saying a new contest is a bad idea; just that some loose ends should probably have been tied up, prior to this announcement.

    This contest is entirely separate to that one. And I don't think we'd be better off refusing to do anything just because our last attempt didn't go so well. After all - it was eight years ago - things have changed since then. :)
    « Last Edit: June 25, 2013, 02:39:35 am by Black Wolf »
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    Offline Fury

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    Re: 2013 HLP Modding Contest. Cash Prizes!
    This sounds like last minute motivational push to complete unfinished FSU assets more than anything else. I can already hear Hades among others sobbing in a corner.

    While it was confirmed earlier that ships like Karuna, Emperor, Diomedes are considered Terran, I'm not sure if that is entirely fair because they are by far very different from any canonical FS Terran designs. These ships could just as well be from another fictional universe like BSG, B5 or SW and yet those are excluded.

     

    Offline Colonol Dekker

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    Re: 2013 HLP Modding Contest. Cash Prizes!
    Amazing, worth it for that gold star alone!!

     

    Offline Black Wolf

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    Re: 2013 HLP Modding Contest. Cash Prizes!
    This sounds like last minute motivational push to complete unfinished FSU assets more than anything else. I can already hear Hades among others sobbing in a corner.

    While it was confirmed earlier that ships like Karuna, Emperor, Diomedes are considered Terran, I'm not sure if that is entirely fair because they are by far very different from any canonical FS Terran designs. These ships could just as well be from another fictional universe like BSG, B5 or SW and yet those are excluded.

    Actually, the basic idea goes back around 12 months, it just wasn't acted on at the time - admittedly, it's been modified from its original platform, somewhat, but the concept of a ship making contest has been there the whole time. And the FSU assets would be excluded under the rules of the competition - please read the post before jumping to conclusions and making accusations.

    Now, I realize that the rules of the contest aren't going to make everyone joyously happy. But they are the rules. While I'm happy to clarify them - especially for people who intent to actually enter rather than just bringing up potential problems that might come up in the future - I don't see them changing, either. We wont be adding an "other" category, or a UEF category, or a category for other universes or anything like that. Those kinds of models belong in a different contest (excluding UEF I suppose, technically). If people wish to participate in this contest, however, they can do so by submitting a Terran, Shivan or Vasudan model. If they don't want to make one of those models, they're not under any obligation to participate in the contest. If we come up against situations that are potentially iffy, the judges will review them on a case by case basis, and again, I'd ask for the benefit of the doubt that we'll make reasonable calls here. I promise that nobody who's made a legitimate effort to comply with the rules of the contest will be excluded.

    [EDIT]Just as an aside, as mjn pointed out, submitting a spiky red and black ship as Vasudan would probably cost the submitter significant points because it wouldn't look Vasudan. The Emperor, Diomedes and Karuna all look more Terran than Vasudan or Shivan, plus they have the blue engine glows and "Terran" in their ship table (or UEF I suppose, but that's just another name for Human/Terran) so they'll be judged as Terran. However, if this hypothetical contest entrant wants to submit a theoretical ship in one of those styles in a different category, he'd be welcome to. It would just be a strange choice.
    « Last Edit: June 25, 2013, 03:39:36 am by Black Wolf »
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    Offline yuezhi

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    Re: 2013 HLP Modding Contest. Cash Prizes!
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    Offline pecenipicek

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    Re: 2013 HLP Modding Contest. Cash Prizes!
    This sounds like last minute motivational push to complete unfinished FSU assets more than anything else. I can already hear Hades among others sobbing in a corner.

    While it was confirmed earlier that ships like Karuna, Emperor, Diomedes are considered Terran, I'm not sure if that is entirely fair because they are by far very different from any canonical FS Terran designs. These ships could just as well be from another fictional universe like BSG, B5 or SW and yet those are excluded.

    Actually, the basic idea goes back around 12 months, it just wasn't acted on at the time - admittedly, it's been modified from its original platform, somewhat, but the concept of a ship making contest has been there the whole time. And the FSU assets would be excluded under the rules of the competition - please read the post before jumping to conclusions and making accusations.

    Now, I realize that the rules of the contest aren't going to make everyone joyously happy. But they are the rules. While I'm happy to clarify them - especially for people who intent to actually enter rather than just bringing up potential problems that might come up in the future - I don't see them changing, either. We wont be adding an "other" category, or a UEF category, or a category for other universes or anything like that. Those kinds of models belong in a different contest (excluding UEF I suppose, technically). If people wish to participate in this contest, however, they can do so by submitting a Terran, Shivan or Vasudan model. If they don't want to make one of those models, they're not under any obligation to participate in the contest. If we come up against situations that are potentially iffy, the judges will review them on a case by case basis, and again, I'd ask for the benefit of the doubt that we'll make reasonable calls here. I promise that nobody who's made a legitimate effort to comply with the rules of the contest will be excluded.

    [EDIT]Just as an aside, as mjn pointed out, submitting a spiky red and black ship as Vasudan would probably cost the submitter significant points because it wouldn't look Vasudan. The Emperor, Diomedes and Karuna all look more Terran than Vasudan or Shivan, plus they have the blue engine glows and "Terran" in their ship table (or UEF I suppose, but that's just another name for Human/Terran) so they'll be judged as Terran. However, if this hypothetical contest entrant wants to submit a theoretical ship in one of those styles in a different category, he'd be welcome to. It would just be a strange choice.
    I'd recommend against going this way, since i believe that the spirit of the contest would be "do new, canon FS2 style ships". And if you let in the UEF for terrans, you just axed that particular idea, since the general style of FS2 Terrans gets utterly diluted.


    as a side note, i'm thinking should i go judging or should i go making -.-
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    Offline MatthTheGeek

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    Re: 2013 HLP Modding Contest. Cash Prizes!
    But I don't think we need to split hairs here over it, especially since I suspect you won't be directly entering. (If it came up from someone who wanted to do it... or if you are entering, then we might go deeper. However, as of this discussion it's entirely theoretical. :) )
    I was thinking of entering as a judge, but thank you for throwing me away as an old sock so soon :p

    I am just trying to raise the hard questions before they become a problem.
    People are stupid, therefore anything popular is at best suspicious.

    Mod management tools     -     Wiki stuff!     -     Help us help you

    666maslo666: Releasing a finished product is not a good thing! It is a modern fad.

    SpardaSon21: it seems like you exist in a permanent state of half-joking misanthropy

    Axem: when you put it like that, i sound like an insane person

    bigchunk1: it's not retarded it's american!
    bigchunk1: ...

    batwota: steele's maneuvering for the coup de gras
    MatthTheGeek: you mispelled grâce
    Awaesaar: grace
    batwota: oh right :P
    Darius: ah!
    Darius: yes, i like that
    MatthTheGeek: the way you just spelled it it means fat
    Awaesaar: +accent I forgot how to keyboard
    MatthTheGeek: or grease
    Darius: the killing fat!
    Axem: jabba does the coup de gras
    MatthTheGeek: XD
    Axem: bring me solo and a cookie

     

    Offline Colonol Dekker

    • HLP is my mistress
    • 213
    • Aken Tigh Dekker
      • My old squad sub-domain
    Re: 2013 HLP Modding Contest. Cash Prizes!
    Isn't it best done beforehand, afaik this contest is now live.

     

    Offline MatthTheGeek

    • Captain Obvious
    • 212
    • Frenchie McFrenchface
    Re: 2013 HLP Modding Contest. Cash Prizes!
    Well it would have been best if we had any kind of warning, this thing just dropped from exactly nowhere, and the hard questions were there.
    People are stupid, therefore anything popular is at best suspicious.

    Mod management tools     -     Wiki stuff!     -     Help us help you

    666maslo666: Releasing a finished product is not a good thing! It is a modern fad.

    SpardaSon21: it seems like you exist in a permanent state of half-joking misanthropy

    Axem: when you put it like that, i sound like an insane person

    bigchunk1: it's not retarded it's american!
    bigchunk1: ...

    batwota: steele's maneuvering for the coup de gras
    MatthTheGeek: you mispelled grâce
    Awaesaar: grace
    batwota: oh right :P
    Darius: ah!
    Darius: yes, i like that
    MatthTheGeek: the way you just spelled it it means fat
    Awaesaar: +accent I forgot how to keyboard
    MatthTheGeek: or grease
    Darius: the killing fat!
    Axem: jabba does the coup de gras
    MatthTheGeek: XD
    Axem: bring me solo and a cookie