Poll

Which of these strikecraft would you most like to see make a cameo as a prototype in Frontlines?

GTF Valkyrie
16 (57.1%)
GTF Hercules
9 (32.1%)
GTB Medusa
2 (7.1%)
GTB Zeus
1 (3.6%)

Total Members Voted: 28

Voting closed: February 07, 2014, 12:08:57 pm

Author Topic: Frontlines 2334 progress (formerly "Request - Single in-game cutscene mission)  (Read 13144 times)

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Offline Rheyah

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Re: Frontlines 2334 progress (formerly "Request - Single in-game cutscene mission)
It's pretty!

 

Offline Lorric

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Re: Frontlines 2334 progress (formerly "Request - Single in-game cutscene mission)
I don't want to be a killjoy, but I don't think I want to see any of those four ships show up in this campaign. Maybe the Valkyrie at a stretch.

What could be amusing though would be a very early Herc, which performs poorly, and is mocked by the pilots on the mission as being a flying brick or something that will never amount to anything. :D

 

Offline InsaneBaron

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Re: Frontlines 2334 progress (formerly "Request - Single in-game cutscene mission)
I think a Herc prototype would be fun. A Valkyrie prototype sounds pretty much like a GTF Angel, which we've seen. A zeus prototype sounds a little too... advanced? Somehow it seems weird to have it that early. An early Medusa might be interesting.

Anyway, I'm definitely looking forward to it once it's done!
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Offline Black Wolf

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Re: Frontlines 2334 progress (formerly "Request - Single in-game cutscene mission)
Hmm, Herc and Valk are way out in front, But three votes between them, pretty close. Interesting.

Also, de-doughnutifying a tad: http://imagebin.org/290236
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Offline Nyctaeus

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Re: Frontlines 2334 progress (formerly "Request - Single in-game cutscene mission)
It's cool :yes:. I have a question, do You bake your textures from tiles and than adjusting them in GIMP/Photoshop? What is your method?
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Offline Black Wolf

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Re: Frontlines 2334 progress (formerly "Request - Single in-game cutscene mission)
Heh, well, I definitely cheat, no doubt about that. I'm not exactly proud of it, but it works! ;)
For simple meshes like this one, where I need to get it done quickly so I can get back to FRED, I'll normally build it in Max, then UV Map it in Lithunwrap, then apply the textures in Paint Shop Pro. I'll often start by pattern-filling tiles onto large areas of UV space that need them, and then adjusting it/adding detail as needed across multiple layers. Not everything is floodfilled though - big chunks of the texture are still handmade, but when time is of the essence, and it's aesthetically acceptable in the specific context of the mesh, it can be gotten away with IMO.,

The method is very, very quick, but allows for the addition of extra detail as needed at a sub-poly scale, which tiling just can't do (unless, as you say, it's baked and added in later). You have to have the correct sort of mesh for it to work though. You can get reasonably good results from this FS1 vasudan palette, with lots of large areas of smooth polies for an armour texture to work on, although it's far from foolproof - I think the Abydos turned out very well, but I've never been happy with the sides of the Ramses - I just couldn't think of anything better to put there so I fell back on the floodfill method. On the other hand, it would look terrible on something like my Tug from earlier in the thread, for example, because the mesh is both smaller and has fewer areas of large smooth armour. That's one of the reasons why I can throw this together in a day or two, while the tug would\will take weeks, probably, to do right. The end result will probably be better on the tug though.
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Offline Black Wolf

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Re: Frontlines 2334 progress (formerly "Request - Single in-game cutscene mission)
Okay, I hadn't really wanted to do this, but I'm worried the project has started to stall out a little and I want to give it the final push it needs to get released in the next one to three months. I think I need some help.

Essentially, I'm looking for two types of assistance. First and foremost, I need a tester or two. I have had some help in this regard, which has been great, but the guys who were helping have all gotten quite busy, and without feedback to work on, I've had less to go on on the missions that are well on their way to being finalized.

Testing is relatively easy, but it's important to remember that it's about much more than just playing the campaign early. I need people who're willing to replay missions three or four times, and report back in detail on bugs, gameplay, difficulty, all that. You'll need to commit a certain amount of time, and need good, easy to understand English.

Secondly, and I know this will be much harder, Id like some help finalizing the FREDding. Most of the missions have been started, to one extent or another, but need work. I can do that myself, but thee are a couple that haven't been begun yet, or have had no serious work done on them, which Id like assistance with. A couple of these are bonus missions, which can and will be cut if things start dragging on too long. But I'd like to see them finished.

Frontlines is mostly about the setting, and the novelty of pre-great war shieldless combat, and the immediately pre FS1 setting eliminates a lot of the tricks I have in mind for the earlier minicampaigns so, while there's a tiny bit of advanced FREDding, for the most part the missions are fairly vanilla. As such, you wont need to be a super experienced FRED genius to help out. I'm also happy to help developing FREDders - I'm no Axem, but I have been messing with FRED for a very long time, and I have a few tricks up my sleeve. :)

Obviously, Id really like someone to volunteer who's excited about the project for its own sake, but I'm also willing to trade, just like I did with mjn to get the Vasudan head anis. If there's something you think I can help you with and you're willing to FRED in return, let me know and we can talk about it.
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Offline Lepanto

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Re: Frontlines 2334 progress (formerly "Request - Single in-game cutscene mission)
I'd be willing to help with both testing and FREDding.
"We have now reached the point where every goon with a grievance, every bitter bigot, merely has to place the prefix, 'I know this is not politically correct, but...' in front of the usual string of insults in order to be not just safe from criticism, but actually a card, a lad, even a hero. Conversely, to talk about poverty and inequality, to draw attention to the reality that discrimination and injustice are still facts of life, is to commit the sin of political correctness. Anti-PC has become the latest cover for creeps. It is a godsend for every curmudgeon and crank, from fascists to the merely smug."
Finian O'Toole, The Irish Times, 5 May 1994

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Frontlines 2334+2335: T-V War campaign
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Offline Black Wolf

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Re: Frontlines 2334 progress (formerly "Request - Single in-game cutscene mission)
Wow, I wasn't actually expecting a positive response so quickly! Thanks for volunteering, I'll arrange access to the forum, and you can have a look at what's been done so far. I'm out at work right now, but will fire off a PM this afternoon to get you up to speed with additional details.

Thanks again! This will make a big difference - with a little help I'm very confident of a release in the next little while. :D
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Offline Lorric

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Re: Frontlines 2334 progress (formerly "Request - Single in-game cutscene mission)
I don't know if I would be of any value to you, but I'd be willing to try and FRED for you.

As I just posted today:

http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=74794.msg1741534#msg1741534

I'm thinking to wait until Spoon creates the new Wings of Dawn to make my own campaign, so it would free me.

Anyway, you could go have a look at my work for Wings of Dawn if you want to see if I'd be any use to you. I can post the latest versions of the missions as attachments if you want.

Also, Lepanto and I are friends. Lepanto and I might well be able to work together on this.

I can also vouch for his FRED ability. He’s much more advanced than I am.

 

Offline Lepanto

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Re: Frontlines 2334 progress (formerly "Request - Single in-game cutscene mission)
Thanks, Black Wolf. I hope I'll be able to serve your project well.

Lorric, you're too kind.  :o
"We have now reached the point where every goon with a grievance, every bitter bigot, merely has to place the prefix, 'I know this is not politically correct, but...' in front of the usual string of insults in order to be not just safe from criticism, but actually a card, a lad, even a hero. Conversely, to talk about poverty and inequality, to draw attention to the reality that discrimination and injustice are still facts of life, is to commit the sin of political correctness. Anti-PC has become the latest cover for creeps. It is a godsend for every curmudgeon and crank, from fascists to the merely smug."
Finian O'Toole, The Irish Times, 5 May 1994

Blue Planet: The Battle Captains: Missions starring the Admirals of BP: WiH
Frontlines 2334+2335: T-V War campaign
GVB Ammit: Vasudan strike bomber
Player-Controlled Capship Modding Tutorial

 

Offline Lorric

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Re: Frontlines 2334 progress (formerly "Request - Single in-game cutscene mission)
Thanks, Black Wolf. I hope I'll be able to serve your project well.
I'm sure you will, with what I've seen you are capable of.

He is lucky to have you.

 

Offline Black Wolf

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Re: Frontlines 2334 progress (formerly "Request - Single in-game cutscene mission)
Lepanto: You have access. :) Scroll down to the forum and have a look at what's been done so far. Feel free to post some thoughts and ideas/opinions - I don't want you to think of the arrangement as "serving my project" so much as contributing to a joint effort.

Lorric: If you're happy to test and FRED, I'm happy to have the additional assistance. :) I'll get your permissions sorted out and you can have a look at the current progress. The forum will appear above gen disc as soon as I sort it out, so have a look, have a play around, and again, Illget a PM through this arvo explaining what needs doing.

I think that the additional two people should be plenty to knock over the rest of the work, so that should be enough for bow. Thanks again guys!
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Offline Lorric

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Re: Frontlines 2334 progress (formerly "Request - Single in-game cutscene mission)
Lorric: If you're happy to test and FRED, I'm happy to have the additional assistance. :) I'll get your permissions sorted out and you can have a look at the current progress. The forum will appear above gen disc as soon as I sort it out, so have a look, have a play around, and again, Illget a PM through this arvo explaining what needs doing.
I only said FRED, because I have a testing commitment with Lepanto. But I've PMd Lepanto, and if he's willing, I can test for you instead.

I'll keep an eye out for the forum.

I'm surprised you have a forum. This was a solo project, was it not? How come you have a forum?

 

Offline Lepanto

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Re: Frontlines 2334 progress (formerly "Request - Single in-game cutscene mission)
Thanks, BW. I saw the forum. I'll do some testing shortly, and give you my impressions. Once that's done, tell me what you want me to do, and I'll get to FREDding.

Lorric, go ahead and test for BW; his project is higher-priority right now, anyway. I would like you to eventually finish beta-ing WFF, though, whenever you get around to it.

"We have now reached the point where every goon with a grievance, every bitter bigot, merely has to place the prefix, 'I know this is not politically correct, but...' in front of the usual string of insults in order to be not just safe from criticism, but actually a card, a lad, even a hero. Conversely, to talk about poverty and inequality, to draw attention to the reality that discrimination and injustice are still facts of life, is to commit the sin of political correctness. Anti-PC has become the latest cover for creeps. It is a godsend for every curmudgeon and crank, from fascists to the merely smug."
Finian O'Toole, The Irish Times, 5 May 1994

Blue Planet: The Battle Captains: Missions starring the Admirals of BP: WiH
Frontlines 2334+2335: T-V War campaign
GVB Ammit: Vasudan strike bomber
Player-Controlled Capship Modding Tutorial

 

Offline Lorric

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Re: Frontlines 2334 progress (formerly "Request - Single in-game cutscene mission)
Lorric, go ahead and test for BW; his project is higher-priority right now, anyway. I would like you to eventually finish beta-ing WFF, though, whenever you get around to it.
He is lucky to have you.
I told you, didn't I. It's paying off for you already! :D

I don't have access to the forum yet, and I can't stick around for too much longer right now anyway, so I'll probably have to get into this properly a lot later on.

I guess testing WFF will have to be finished when this project is finished.

EDIT:

Thanks again guys!

You're welcome. :)
« Last Edit: March 24, 2014, 01:01:02 am by Lorric »

 

Offline Black Wolf

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Re: Frontlines 2334 progress (formerly "Request - Single in-game cutscene mission)
Lorric: You now have access, sorry for the delay. I'm doing this all in between drill holes at work. :) Same goes for you as I said for Lepanto - feel free to offer ideas, thoughts, suggestions, even outside of mission specific stuff - if you're willing to help, I'm willing to listen to input and suggestions in return. If there's going to be a team, then the mod should be a team effort.

Regarding the forum, I have it basically because, err... I asked for it, I guess. A private forum for a pre-released project to coordinate mission testing and such things is a very low impact request, especially given that, as a mod, I already had limited user group permissions access, I was able to administer it myself. Given how many unreleased ex-hosted projects there are though, I would probably not have gotten a public forum/webspace/badge without either a release, or significantly more visible progress than I had when I asked for the private forum.
« Last Edit: March 24, 2014, 01:41:33 am by Black Wolf »
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Offline Lorric

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Re: Frontlines 2334 progress (formerly "Request - Single in-game cutscene mission)
Lorric: You now have access, sorry for the delay. I'm doing this all in between drill holes at work. :) Same goes for you as I said for Lepanto - feel free to offer ideas, thoughts, suggestions, even outside or mission specific stuff - if you're willing to help, I'm willing to listen to input and suggestions in return. If there's going to be a team, then the mod should be a team effort.

Regarding the forum, I have it basically because, err... I asked for it, I guess. A private forum for a pre-released project to coordinate mission testing and such things is a very low impact request, especially given that, as a mod, I already had limited user group permissions access, I was able to administer it myself. Given how many unreleased ex-hosted projects there are though, I would probably not have gotten a public forum/webspace/badge without either a release, or significantly more visible progress than I had when I asked for the private forum.
Alright, I see it! :)

Alright, that's good to know. I wonder if I could ever get one then if I was ever able to drag a campaign into it's later stages, and needed testers. It would certainly be a lot more efficient than firing PMs around all over the place. Who knows, maybe I could even get Spoon to make me a child board, since I would intend to make a WOD campaign.

 

Offline Black Wolf

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Re: Frontlines 2334 progress (formerly "Request - Single in-game cutscene mission)
So, I realized that I didn't actually post a proper status update when I asked for help, and that it's been awhile since I actually did post anything explaining how the campaign is going in terms of progress. So, here goes:

Just int he past few days alone, Lorric and Lepanto have been a huge shot in the arm for the project. Lorric has been testing away like mad, coming up with all sorts of little errors and places to polish existing missions, as well as showing up a few more serious bugs. He's also agreed to take point on the training missions for the campaign, which will teach all you spoiled, post-capella high falluting techno-kids what it was like back in my day! (Aka how to fight without shields, aspect seeking missiles or any of the fancy stuff we already take for granted by less than halfway through FS1).

Lepanto, meanwhile, has also been doing some testing, but in addition to that, he's also taken one of my embryonic missions from "Barely started" through to a very solid WiP, and has plans to improve it further still in the coming days. He actually took the mission in a direction I hadn't considered by integrating some significant Vasudan capital ships, and really improved the way it fits into the overall structure of the campaign.

I've been fixing whatever bugs and errors the testers spot, working on and improving each mission bit by bit, and the standards really are, IMHO, climbing steadily. These aren't hyper complex missions, but they're solid, fun, the player knows what he has to do, and hopefully they're all going to be very close to bug free by the time release rolls around. How far away is that, you ask? Well, the official status thread currently lists 3 missions as complete, and another 4 as "Near Complete", which basically means they have very minor work still to be done, in most cases a bit of debrief tidying up - with one or two potentially tricky bugs excepted, there's nothing in there that should take more than a few hours to fix - I honestly think I can have that number up to 6, maybe even 7 completed by Monday. If Lepanto can continue his FREDding pace, that number could easily be 8 before too long as well. Given that, excluding cutscenes, there are only 10 missions total in the campaign, things are definitely looking good.

Oh, and last but not least, mjn.mixael has agreed (in principle :)) to throwing together a few small CB Anims for us - we don't have many CBs in such a short campaign, but the ones we do have are going to be much nicer now. :D
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Offline Lorric

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Re: Frontlines 2334 progress (formerly "Request - Single in-game cutscene mission)
Thanks Black Wolf. It's nice to be appreciated. Even if I did pull apart your "complete" missions and show you they weren't quite so "complete" after all, and I'm not finished with them yet either... :p

But don't worry people, for the most part this was minor stuff like he said and all or nearly all have been dealt with. A few more tests to do, but it's looking good.

Anyway, what I really wanted to say was now I'm working on this, it was fun to read the thread through again just now from start to finish, now that I can actually see the work, I can see the progress made on the project through the updates on the thread with a new clarity. Pretty educational and fun.

You can already see in the thread that I was enthusiastic about this project, and while it might possibly have not been clear to Black Wolf in the process of my testing, since I was trying to find things to fix or improve, I'd like to say publicly, that at least to me, he has not disappointed with this campaign. I had some pretty high hopes for it to begin with, and I'd honestly say that they have been exceeded. :nod:

I especially had a blast with one of the missions. It was one of the closest battles I've ever had in Freespace. It was a rush. And I took and kept a screenshot of my knife edge victory.

The campaign isn't going to be revolutionary or ground-breaking, don't get me wrong. It's not supposed to be. But if the low tech, shieldless combat or the setting appeals to you, I don't see how you can go wrong here. It feels like a Freespace campaign. I mean something by :v-old:. And that's what got us all started here, is it not? That was part of what Black Wolf was going for and I'd say he's succeeded. It's the Terran Vasudan War, and it just feels right. :)