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Topics - IchoTolot

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1
Contests / Level Design Contest #24
« on: September 18, 2021, 03:14:10 PM »
Welcome to another contest of the Lemmingsforums! This time the three rules have been picked by Kingshadow3 for winning contest #23.

A few words to new participants and forum members: If you haven't entered before, I strongly encourage you to try - even if you don't win, it's fun to participate; and we have had cases where first-time entrants have won before! There are three choices of rules given, you may enter one level for EACH one of the rules.
You may either use new format NeoLemmix, or Lix.
If you have more than one entry, they may (but do not have to) be for the same engine. Please make sure you tested your level for basic solvability before submitting and be sure to also submit any custom tileset you are using, so others have no problem playing your level. ;)

Pre contest testing: You can choose 1 person who does a bit of pre-testing for you, so that the biggest backroutes and screw-ups of your levels can be detected before the playing phase. I cannot control this so it's only a guideline, but still I would prefer not everyone knows every level before the playing phase starts. ;)

Here are the rules on how the submission deadlines work:
- Initial submission phase deadline will extend such that it's 72 hours from the time of the last submission, up to the 5th submission (inclusive). After this it no longer changes no matter what.
- Update phase deadline will not extend over the initial dead line!
- Even if you missed the cutoff date for the initial submission phase, late entries are accepted until the update phase ends. There is no penalty for a late entry, beyond that people are less likely to spend as much time on the level before voting begins.


And here is the new ruleset:

Rule 1: The 9th Skill

Make a level with exactly 1 new skill type along with at least 2 of the 8 original skill types.

You can only use 1 of the 13 new skills for Neolemmix (Or in the case of Lix, 1 of the 6 new skills) and 2 or more of the original 8 skills. The quantity of each skill doesn't matter.

- Any pick-up skills used must also follow this rule.
- Pre-assigned skills on hatches/lemmings are limited to Climbers, Floaters, Pre-Placed Blockers. If you chose a permanent skill or the Shimmier (Pre-placed lemmings only) as the new skill they are limited to that skill.
-You are allowed to not put the new skill on the skillset panel if you choose to have a new pre-assigned skill on a hatch/Lemmings except the Shimmier.

Rule 2: Big levels can be fun too

Make a level that is at least 200K square pixels large (800K square pixels for Lix).

Examples of what is acceptable (This is for Neolemmix, Double both dimensions for Lix):
1280W x 160H = 204,800 square pixels
800Wx320H = 256,000 square pixels
600Wx400H = 240,000 square pixels

Note: This is kinda obvious but you cannot just make a level like "Not as complicated as it looks" where it only uses a small fraction of the level. The intended solution needs to use a reasonable amount of the level. I won't be too harsh, but please stay in the spirit of the rule here.

Rule 3: Variety from the past

Make a level with a previous contest rule you never entered for.

This one should be simple to understand. You must make a level that follows a rule from one of the previous contests but you must not have entered for that rule during that contest. From Contests #10 through #19, You were only permitted to enter for two of the rules. This gives you a chance to enter for the one rule you were unable to when that contest ran. If someone didn't participate in a particular contest, they can pick from any of those rules from that contest. In the author field, you will need to enter the past rule you are going with in parentheses after your name.
Example: If you were going with Contest 19 Rule 2 - "Make a level whose terrain spells your username". You would enter in your author field: "[Username] (C19R2)".
For the file name format, instead of putting in User1_Levelname_RXV1.lvl, you would put in User1_Levelname_R3V1(CXXRX).lvl

However any skills, tilesets and features (Such as having 10 skill types in the skill panel) available in the current build can be used for the rule you choose. You are not restricted only to skills and features that existed when that contest ran, so you can still use Jumpers for rules from contests #20 and before or Laserers and Sliders for any of the contest rules despite those skills not existing in a stable build during those times.

For previous contest design rules, Go here!

Some rules are exluded though due to them having become very very easy to satisfy now (most custom tilesets rules) or due to them being very special (Tag Team, Flipped terrain rule):

#1 - Make a level using an unofficial tileset
#3 - Tag Team (one person designs the terrain, the other places objects and assigns stats)
#8 - Make a level with a L2 or L3 style
#12R3 - Make a VGASPEC level
#13R1 - Make a level with tileset mixing
#13R3 - Make a level without using any official tilesets
#15R1 - Make two levels with the same terrain, but one is flipped
#17R1 - Make a level using only tilesets you haven't used before

So please do not choose them! ;)


Submission phase ends November 7th 2021 at 00:00 UTC.

Ruleset in detail again: http://www.lemmingsforums.net/index.php?topic=2246.0

Send me a personal message with your level/s and if needed tileset/s to participate. It would also be nice to also tell me the rule which each level satisfies.

Please use the following naming format:  User1_Levelname_R3V1.lvl ---> Level "Levelname" by User1   for Rule 3   Version 1 of the level

Prize selection:
- US $5.00
- One month's advertising on the forums news ticker
- Pick next contest's rules

Entries so far: 0

2
Contests / Lemmings Forums Level Contest #23 - Results
« on: September 12, 2021, 05:22:30 PM »
Ladies and gentleman, we've got our final results! :)

The winning level is:

Kingshadow3's "The Monkey Cave"

Congratulations to Kingshadow3 for winning the contest! :thumbsup:

Congratulation to Armani as well as he reached the 2nd place with:

Armani's "Cactus Valley"


Choice for the prize for the first place is either:

- a month's advertising on the forum's news ticker
- picking the next contest's rules
- US $5.00 (PayPal would be the easiest here I think).

3
In each voting round, you're allowed to vote for up to a certain number of levels. Vote for the levels that you want to stay in the contest, not for levels you want eliminated. You may vote for fewer levels than the permitted maximum. You may vote for your own levels.

It's not allowed to discuss the levels publicly on the forums during the voting phase, even if the level is not in the current round, or even between rounds.

You may discuss any level in private messages. You may discuss publicly off-site, e.g., you may post Youtube videos of your playthroughs, or discuss in IRC chat. Eliminated levels may be discussed anywhere, even publicly on the forums.

There'll be voteoffs within each design rule, to get down to one/two/three remaining levels per design rule.

If after the rule voteoff the number of remaining levels is >9, I will create 2 mixed groups semi-randomly out of the remaining levels to bring down the number even further. For all of this no tiebreakers are planned. After this, all qualifying levels will go into a final mixed voteoff.

Generally, the number of levels that qualify for the next round will be the same as each user's permitted vote maximum. I've decided to keep the percentages of "surviving" levels of the rule-voteoffs somewhat similar to give every rule a fair chance. Example: A rule with a 66% survival-rate and one with a 33% survival-rate for the mixed rounds doesn't seem that fair to me.

There's only a prize for the 1st place winner - of course, getting close to that still means you made a great level.

So... let the voting begin! Each round will be open for voting for 3 days, except the final which will be 4 days.

All levels are still avialable in the discussion topic: https://www.lemmingsforums.net/index.php?topic=5681.0

4
Other Projects / IchoTolot's "To-Play" list
« on: August 03, 2021, 03:04:31 PM »
I've decided to put up a little list of packs I still have on my "to-play" list as I want to avoid totally forgetting about things. :)

Also, I want to list all packs that I have solved, but still are backrouted and either still need to be fixed by the creator (if the creator fixes packs in the first place) or I still need to resolve after a fix. Only after this process of fixing and resolving is finished for my playthrough then I will marked it as solved for me.
Packs where I have not yet received feedback if my solutions are acceptable are included too.

All lists are no no particular oder. ;)

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

"To-Play" List:

- [Neolemmix] Mikes Lemmings [Difficulty: Medium - Hard] - Turrican

- [NeoLemmix] Long Live Lemmings! [Difficulty: Easy-Hard] - NieSch

- [NeoLemmix] Lemmings Uncharted [Difficulty: Medium-Extreme] - Armani

- Festival Millas 2020 - GigaLem

- [NeoLemmix] Lemmings Open Air [Difficulty: Medium - Hard] - Strato Incendus

- [NeoLemmix] The Krow Files - Dire Krow

- [NL] The Lemmings Strike Again! (Mobilems 3) - Mobius

- Lemmings presents GOTTA GO FAST!!! [NL][Difficulty: Medium - Very Hard]


In the fix/resolve cycle:

- [NL 12.7.0+] Lemmings Destination [Difficulty: Medium-Very Hard] - Nessy

- [NL] Gronkling's Animal Pack: #1 RODENTS [difficulty: Easy & Hard] - Gronkling

- Assorted Gubbins - SQron188

- LemRunner - 92Dexter11


Ready to Record

- [Neolemmix] Lemmings Surges [Difficulty: Easy - Hard] - Duuduu

5
NeoLemmix Tutorials / Successful "easy" levels and contests.
« on: July 22, 2021, 03:19:38 PM »
I was unsure where to post this topic. In level design it will inevitably be overlooked by the target audience and buried by other topics. It is also not a contest even if it's about contests and would clutter the board. As it should be at least a piece of advice/turorial, I think it will fit in well here while at least having a chance to be seen by the target audience. :)

I recently heard a statement about how again not an easy level won the contest. This is true and even if difficulty depends highly on personal opinion most contest winner levels are on the "medium", "medium-hard" side.

Why is that and how can such a baseline be broken?

Levels usually gain a lot of votes if the solution is surprising (aka uses an old or new trick well), executes smoothly without much fiddeling and if not too strict timings go together smoothly. Also levels that are visually breathtaking tend to gain bonus votes.
Let's take the recent LOTY 2020 winner: DireKrow's "Shoestring Operation".
It's not an easy level, but not nearly unsolvable. It takes time and effort to solve, but most people will eventually get it. It has a nice distinct look and the execution is not fiddely. I would again put it in the "medium", "medium-hard" range.
If many people solve the level it also helps their cause. As people who have solved the level by themselves tend to have a more positive connection with it.

On the other side levels tend to do worse if they get too hard. Especially the "solution is surprising (aka uses an old or new trick well)" part can easily do a 180 if you overdo it. Often this is unvoluntarily as difficulty is hard to judge.
If people cannot solve your level, they tend to not vote for it even if looking up the solution.
I would raise my contest 17 entries IchoTolot's "Shadows Of Ourselves" and IchoTolot's "Catacomb Of Sorrow" as an example here. I would still claim that they are good levels, but only like 1 or 2 people solved them.
But consider this: If people immediately solve your level it can fail to leave a mark and feel empty or just be like whatever.  So how can we midigate this and get far in contests with "easy" levels?

Point 1 and by far the most important one: Easy does not imply trivial!

It can be hard to achieve and you can easily drift away into harder ranges, but this is important. Easy does not automatically mean that the solution is completely trivial. You do not have to give the player like 99 of everything to make something easy.
You can focus on a smaller level with not so many but easy to place skills for example. A gap over a death pit always means a contruction skill is destined to be placed there, a wall you 100% have to go through forces a destructive skill,...etc.
You still should create a puzzle and not just merely a set of tasks to be done. The "set of tasks" types make good training levels but are not that impactful otherwise.
I would put up "Postcard from Lemmingland" as a positive example or even zanzindorf's "Bird Knight" which won contest 11. Both levels are not trivial, but should not give you many problems if you are moderately familiar with lemmings in general.
Do not simply throw in dozens of skills and make everything trivial! It is still a puzzle game and if there is no puzzle there it won't stick in people's minds.
I also need to add that having the normal solution be trivial and only introduce more challenging solutions via talismans usually won't be enough and too many talismans can really clutter the level!

Point 2: Score on the visual side!

So your "easy" level is not trivial, but that does not automatically make it a hit. If it does not look excellent it will miss out on quite a few potential votes. Visuals alone probaly won't carry a level to victory, but even I can assure you that I had plenty of situations when I gave my vote to the better looking level when I was torn on what to vote. If it does not look good you cannot count on getting good results and if you cannot blow people's minds with complex tricks, blow their mind on the visual side!

Take plenty of time to craft, shape and decorate your contest levels! Don't just slap some things together! You can slap solutions together - I know this works if correctly handled ;) - but you can't slap landscapes together. Pieces should go over smoothly (or roughly in a fitting way) into each other. The outside of the main playing area should be at least somewhat decorated. Giant walls can have cravings made out of other terrain on top of them to create beautiful effects and as a result they are not giant monoton terrain sections, etc. Make your level look great and you will definitly gain some extra votes here and there.

Point 3: Avoid generally disliked machanics.

Be really cautious to not lower your chances by adding mostly disliked things! Easy levels sometimes try to rely on gimmicks and this can heavily backfire in contests!

Avoid things like unnessesary timers, hidden stuff and overly repetitive tasks (near to nobody is excited to build a 20 builder bridge). A few people may like/tolerate these things, but in the vast majority of cases it will cost you votes.
Especially fooling the player with hidden stuff tends to really bring down your vote count.
Do not take this extra handicap!


I hope this has been somewhat helpful and you hopefully have a bit more success with contests now! :)
Still, winning a contest often still has a touch of randomness attached to it and do not take winning as guaranteed! Even if you follow these guidelines you won't automatically win, but I would say youer chances will rise!

6
Small visual bug. :)

If you increase the number of a skill in the skill tab from 0 so that the number is >0 after the change then the field goes from grey to white.

This is currently not the case for the slider or laserer field and their respective field stays grey..

7
LOTY 2020 has finally ended and the winner is:

DireKrow's "Shoestring Operation"

Congratulations to DireKrow! I will contact you soon regarding the price of 10 USD.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The runner up level was: Armani's "Polaris Rhapsody"

Third place goes to: IchoTolot's "Temple Of Escher"

See you soon in LOTY 2021!

8
Contests / Level Design Contest #23 - Playing Phase (Update Topic)
« on: July 10, 2021, 01:34:44 PM »
Note: This topic is ONLY for posting updates to your levels, or making late submissions. All other posts will be deleted. If you want to discuss the levels, post replays, etc, please do so in the Discussion Topic.

Please follow these rules for updates:
1. When posting a new updated version of a level, remove any old updated versions of that level --> Have all your recent updates stored in 1 post! I will delete such old posts eventually if the author doesn't; so don't store any important information in them.
2. Make a new post for a new update; do not edit your most recent post. You may, however, post updates to multiple entries (if you have more than one) in the same post.
3. Use the same filename as found in the ZIP of the entered levels, with "V2" "V3" etc added at the end. No matter how minor an update is, give it a new number.
4. Do not post in this topic, unless it's to post an update to your levels. Use the discussion topic instead for anything else.

Please use the same naming format as in the zip file:  User1_Levelname_R3V5.lvl ---> Level "Levelname" by User1   for Rule 3   Version 5 of the level 

For late submissions also, please use the same kind of filename as is used in the main levels download - ie: your username, and "R1" "R2" or "R3" to mark which rule the level is for. Please be sure to check the original contest announcement topic for the rules; as the notes in the discussion topic are simply meant as reminders, not full explanations of the rules.

Please use the right naming format when posting updates! That would lead to less confusions and less work for everyone.

Link to discussion topic

9
All zips only need to be unzipped inside the main folder of your NeoLemmix Player!

NeoLemmix Level Pack: https://www.dropbox.com/s/pn7lzbqf4kuq2ja/Contest_23.zip?dl=1

Music: https://www.dropbox.com/s/6kai36r33yrf0px/Contest_23_Music.zip?dl=1

Rule 1 Levels

Armani's "Cactus Valley" (V1)
IchoTolot's "Craze Or Crazy?" (V1)
Kaywhyn's "Everything Comes in Twos?" (V10)
Kingshadow3's "The Monkey Cave" (V4)


Rule 2 Levels

Armani's "Brakes Failed" (V2)
IchoTolot's "Retspen's Tomb" (V1)
Kaywhyn's "30 Seconds Before the Final Curtain Call" (V8)
Kingshadow3's "Master Of The Minute" (V6)


Rule 3 Levels

Armani's "The Age of Affluence" (V1)
IchoTolot's "Countdown To Meltdown" (V1)
Kaywhyn's "Cross Over Into the Light, My Lems!" (V5)
Kingshadow3's "Straight And Curved" (V3)


You can check the rules details again here: https://www.lemmingsforums.net/index.php?topic=5599.0

Playing Phase will be closed on 20th of August!
Updates will close on 17th of August!


Note: This topic is for posting your comments, replays, etc for the levels. If you wish to post an update to your level, or enter a late submission, please do so in the Updates Topic instead.

Link to update topic

10
Just to keep track and to make sure we do forget as little pieces as possible I decided to create and update a list of objects which primary use is "only on terrain" as those need to be changed to the new "paint" type soon.

Be sure to post any tiles I forgot to mention in this topic so I can add them to the list!

List of objects that will need an update to the paint type:

- L2_shadow: 2 x animated windows
- L2_egyptian: 1 x sphinx eyes
- L2_outdoor: 1 x Blinking bush eyes, 1 x  animated spider eyes
- L3_biolab: laser trap upper part

11
Contests / Level of the Year 2020: Voting, Phase 4 (Current: Finals)
« on: June 26, 2021, 02:37:56 PM »
We've finally reached the final phase and got 4 levels as candidates for LOTY 2020!

We will vote them down from 4 to 3 to 2 to 1, ensured by tiebreakers if nessesary.


If you want to see the full list of nominated levels in non-randomized order, check the nominations list topic.
If you want to play these levels without having to dig up all the various level packs, check the playing phase topic which has an NXP available for download that contains all the nominated levels.

Please remember that discussing the nominated levels is not allowed in the LOTY2020 topics now that voting has begun. This does not apply to levels that have already been eliminated at the time. Discussing them elsewhere in the site is okay, as long as it's not in the context of LOTY2020.

12
10 levels have made it to this third phase. Now we will try and reduce this number to 4 or slightly above that due to possible ties.

The levels have been divided into 2 groups of 5 levels semi-randomly.

Each group will be voted on one at a time, with the goal being that 2 levels from each group advancing to Phase 4. This number can increase in the case of ties. I plan no tiebreakers for this!

If you want to see the full list of nominated levels in non-randomized order, check the nominations list topic.
If you want to play these levels without having to dig up all the various level packs, check the playing phase topic which has an NXP available for download that contains all the nominated levels.

Please remember that discussing the nominated levels is not allowed in the LOTY2020 topics now that voting has begun. This does not apply to levels that have already been eliminated at the time. Discussing them elsewhere in the site is okay, as long as it's not in the context of LOTY2020.

13
23 levels have made it to this second phase. Here we will try and reduce this number to 8 or slightly above that due to possible ties. That means there will be likely another quick phase with 2 groups and therefore only 2 voting rounds as I think more than 9 levels in one single group is a bit too big for the final phase.

The levels have been divided into 4 groups of 5-6 levels semi-randomly.

Each group will be voted on one at a time, with the goal being that 2 levels from each group advancing to Phase 3. This number can increase in the case of ties. I plan no tiebreakers for this!

If you want to see the full list of nominated levels in non-randomized order, check the nominations list topic.
If you want to play these levels without having to dig up all the various level packs, check the playing phase topic which has an NXP available for download that contains all the nominated levels.

Please remember that discussing the nominated levels is not allowed in the LOTY2020 topics now that voting has begun. This does not apply to levels that have already been eliminated at the time. Discussing them elsewhere in the site is okay, as long as it's not in the context of LOTY2020.

14
Contests / Level Design Contest #23
« on: May 17, 2021, 04:12:04 PM »
Welcome to another contest of the Lemmingsforums! This time the three rules have been picked by Armani for winning contest #22.

A few words to new participants and forum members: If you haven't entered before, I strongly encourage you to try - even if you don't win, it's fun to participate; and we have had cases where first-time entrants have won before! There are three choices of rules given, you may enter one level for EACH one of the rules.
You may either use new format NeoLemmix, or Lix.  The new NL RC is not viable for this contest! Only the stable version!
If you have more than one entry, they may (but do not have to) be for the same engine. Please make sure you tested your level for basic solvability before submitting and be sure to also submit any custom tileset you are using, so others have no problem playing your level. ;)

Pre contest testing: You can choose 1 person who does a bit of pre-testing for you, so that the biggest backroutes and screw-ups of your levels can be detected before the playing phase. I cannot control this so it's only a guideline, but still I would prefer not everyone knows every level before the playing phase starts. ;)

Here are the rules on how the submission deadlines work:
- Initial submission phase deadline will extend such that it's 72 hours from the time of the last submission, up to the 5th submission (inclusive). After this it no longer changes no matter what.
- Update phase deadline will not extend over the initial dead line!
- Even if you missed the cutoff date for the initial submission phase, late entries are accepted until the update phase ends. There is no penalty for a late entry, beyond that people are less likely to spend as much time on the level before voting begins.


And here is the new ruleset:

Rule 1: A lot of forum members are fans of x of everything levels!

Make a X of every Y different kind of skill level where X≤10 and Y≥5

     - Pick-up skills(if they exist) count towards the skill limit.
     - Pre-assigned skills on hatches or lemmings(if they exist) don't count towards the Y skill types limit.


Rule 2: Mini-level

Make a very small level with few lemmings and a tight timer.

     - The level must not be larger than 240x120 pixels. (3/4 of the default horizontal and vertical size, respectively)
     - The level gives at most a total of 10 lemmings. Neutals, pre-placed lemmings and cloners count towards the limit!
     - The level should have a time limit of 1 minute or less.


Rule 3: Like oil and water

Divide your level into two sections.

     - Sizes and shapes of the sections are up to you.

You can choose two different tilesets, no more, no less. For the two tilesets you chose, use a different tileset in each section.

     - VGASPECs are not allowed.
     - You have to use the terrain pieces and objects from the same tileset in each section.

All hatch(es) need to be in one section, while all exit(s) need to be in the other section.

I don't want to be too strict here. If you use two different styles and they don't blend into one another, it's fine.

Example:





Submission phase ends July 7th 2021 at 00:00 UTC.

Ruleset in detail again: http://www.lemmingsforums.net/index.php?topic=2246.0

Send me a personal message with your level/s and if needed tileset/s to participate. It would also be nice to also tell me the rule which each level satisfies.

Please use the following naming format:  User1_Levelname_R3V1.lvl ---> Level "Levelname" by User1   for Rule 3   Version 1 of the level

Prize selection:
- US $5.00
- One month's advertising on the forums news ticker
- Pick next contest's rules

Entries so far: 12

- Kingshadow3 (3)
- Armani (3)
- IchoTolot (3)
- kaywhyn (3)

15
Welcome to the Level of the Year 2020 voteoff!

So, most of you will know how this works, but just in case - and so that specifics are covered - here's a quick rundown.

The 48 nominated levels have been divided into 6 groups of 8 levels, semi-randomly. To be specific, the division was done in such a way that a single author wouldn't have too many levels in a single group.

Each group will be voted on one at a time, with only 3 levels from each group advancing to Phase 2. We try to bring the number down to 3 in 1 single Round. I plan no tiebreakers for this and if we have a minor tie then all tied levels advance. In case of a lot of major ties (5or6+ levels), I might run a tiebreaker later.

If we then have a bit more than 18 levels in phase 2, these will be split up into 3-4 groups for phase 2. There, I also plan to just let 2-3 of each group survive with no tiebreakers if possible. Only in the final phase I plan to enforce placements with tiebreakers.

If you want to see the full list of nominated levels in non-randomized order, check the nominations list topic.
If you want to play these levels without having to dig up all the various level packs, check the playing phase topic which has an NXP available for download that contains all the nominated levels.

Please remember that discussing the nominated levels is not allowed in the LOTY2020 topics now that voting has begun. This does not apply to levels that have already been eliminated at the time. Discussing them elsewhere in the site is okay, as long as it's not in the context of LOTY2020.

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