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Messages - ccexplore

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Non-Lemmings Gaming / Re: Baba is You (puzzle game)
« on: Today at 09:34:34 pm »
Unless you insist on playing on a console, the game is also available on all the major PC platforms including Mac and even Linux, if I read the game's website correctly.  You can get it through Steam but it's not a prerequisite for any of those PC platforms (again, if I read the website correctly).  The demo Simon linked to seems to be Windows-only though.

Admittedly, it might be nice to have it available on Android or iOS, though I understand and sympathize that the developer may not be willing to commit to the kind of pricing models common on mobile.

Non-Lemmings Gaming / Re: Baba is You (puzzle game)
« on: Today at 08:41:47 pm »
Thanks Simon for the link to the demo, I'm too spoiled by the pricing in mobile gaming and feel slightly hesitant like namida to pony up $15 on the outset.  I probably will still wait for a sale but having a demo to evaluate should certainly help. :thumbsup:

It definitely looks like an interest, unique evolution of the rather well-tread genre of block-pushing puzzle games.  On the one hand, we had seen a kind of programmability in even games like Lemmings/Lix, where you basically get to program the Lemmings/Lixes but on an individual basis rather than en-masse (the analogy is even better on games like Lemmings 3 where getting to a pick-up skill is part of the puzzle), and at the same time there are also other game elements (eg. terrain, exit, entrance, traps) which have fully fixed behavior.  And then the block-pushing puzzle games of course long had elements with fixed behavior, but whose behavior can be controlled in limited, predefined ways (as part of the fixed physics of that element) via other elements like switches.  This game takes the neat step of dissociating elements from behaviors, and make "behaviors" themselves another game (meta)element, providing you the ability to completely change the behavior all instances of a particular element--kind of like a super-switch that can in some cases turn one type of things into another type altogether.

General Discussion / Re: Best quotes from IRC, Mumble and Discord
« on: March 17, 2019, 06:17:12 am »
Hmm interesting.  Anyway, skimming through recent days of logs, there are typically lots of days on those channels where the only "activities" were joins and quits.  I'm also guessing some (many?) of the quits might just be the computer going to sleep?

Anyway, maybe the only thing unusual about the past Friday was not that almost no one was on, but that their connections all managed to stay alive and undisturbed for over 24 hours?  It's either that, or almost everyone took a break on the exact same day, or the bot was broken for some amount of time that day so the log was incomplete.

Lix Main / Re: Panel icons (Quicksave shouldn't be floppy disk)
« on: March 16, 2019, 01:13:42 pm »
The flag has no obvious first meaning, maybe report-post-to-moderator-on-social-media, but that's very weak association in Lix.

In Microsoft Outlook (email client) there is a feature to "flag" emails for follow-ups, ie. to essentially highlight the emails you don't want to immediately respond to, but will need to do so later (often by some deadline).  In a vague sense, a quicksave flags the current state of the level for possible re-visit later.  (If you're wondering, Outlook's UI has text displayed underneath all icons in the "ribbon" near the top of window, so there's no issue there with deciphering any icon's meaning.  That of course also eats up valuable vertical screen estate, so :-\)

Anyhow, as I was thinking about it more, quickload is very much like jumping back to a specific point in time in the past.  Kind of makes me wonder if there's some possible depiction of quicksave & quickload, involving a clock face somehow, that can actually convey the concept at play.

As for splat ruler, would having a tiny lix with a downward-pointing arrow below it, all next to a ruler to the right, be more informative?  Or probably just too busy and packed within the confines available?  I do think if you are definitely going with the ruler, also having double-arrow feels somewhat redundant, not sure it'd express anything additional beyond what the ruler already expresses.

Lix Main / Re: Panel icons (Quicksave shouldn't be floppy disk)
« on: March 05, 2019, 11:47:50 pm »
The flag marks a point without doing anything with that point. Any other Most other save icons, including the curled arrow, again suggests writing to disk, which is sad. Also Clones used the flag for savestates. Not sure if more games do.

Granted I'm not much of a gamer nowadays, but from my limited, possibly very outdated experience, most games don't really offer savestates in the way Lix or even Clones does.  RPGs often do, but they also tend to have an extensive text-based menu system to begin with, and it's easier to just put the options there in plain text without icons.  In many other games (and also some RPGs too), save points are limited and are encountered within the level as some consistent but random object that generally stands out from the environment, but otherwise doesn't obviously scream "I'm a savepoint/checkpoint" on first glance.  They may be mentioned in the game manual or some in-game tutorial.

Most emulators do have savestate features, but again, they also tend to just use a traditional text-based menu system rather than icons.

I don't remember exactly how I learned the UI of Clones, but I seem to recall it does do mouse-over tooltips, which if true is most likely how I learned.  The flag is a reasonable icon, but I suspect it'll be tough to find an icon that most people will immediately recognize as savestate/loadstate--especially when many people may not even expect such a feature in a game--sure, we all can't live without it, but especially for new players, it is rather foreign and never present in any of the official Lemmings games.

Still, maybe the flag is good enough since at least it doesn't imply saving to disk.

If mouse-over tooltips won't be implemented in any form, maybe display some response text somewhere whenever user clicks on the savestate/loadstate icon?  Saying something like "current state of level captured.  Use the next button to the right to reload saved state" or similar.


As for splat ruler, I actually think the double arrow that is also bookended by the lines is standard enough of a depiction of length/measurement, that I don't think it will be confused with resizing.

No plans to try to depict the "splat" part in the icon somehow?  Or is that probably too difficult within the confines of the icon's size?

I could easily switch to just uploading my own songs, but if they happen to be similar - even if only a short part of it - to a song I don't even know myself, but the bot does, then it can be blocked even though it's completely self-written. There are only 12 notes on the keyboard, after all, and everyone knows how many "4 chord songs" exist out there.

Then I guess try extending it to a 5-chord song? ;P

Kidding aside, it might be too early to tell how much this is a problem, since the hypothetical filter hasn't actually been implemented yet.  Clearly it will have to be fine-tuned a bit to balance the false positives and false negatives.  I suspect short fragments that happen to collide with random known music will likely still be okay.  I also think there'd likely be more weight given to things like the melody that would also have a lot more notes (and hence harder to collide randomly).

In any case, there's a pretty long tradition in for example, TV shows like The Simpsons where a scene is pretty obviously parodying some famous scene from another movie or TV show, but presumably due to copyright they purposely composed their own completely different music that nevertheless vaguely feels similar in spirit or effect to the original, even though the chords and notes are quite different.  So this gives me optimism that you can usually tweak your way around even accidental false positives.  Again it'll partly depend on how they implement the filtering, for example would user be able to easily find out which portions of their upload were detected as potential violations?

But so far I only got content ID claims for videos as soon as they were uploaded completely (for three of them, all of them reading "the owner allows the usage, but ads may appear on your video", as I explained above). If the upload itself is prevented already, I'm not sure to what extent people responsible at YouTube are even going to be able to see these videos and check whether the claim is accurate or not.

Again, it's fair to wonder and worry about such things, but also a bit early as nothing has been implemented or probably even spec'ed out yet.

I'd think it would be in best interest of the platforms to provide an issue resolution process for the cases where you want to dispute the upload filters.  I have to imagine that they would have to provide a way for you to upload a video for the purpose of such a process.  It would not be subjected to filtering since it won't be published for anyone to see except the team behind the review/resolution process.

Hmm, just update the thread again when the final vote takes place and the reform becomes law for real (or not, as whatever the case will be).  All of you are welcome to continue debating the merits and demerits here, but you should probably consider other channels than here when it comes to advocacy (regardless of sides) if you actually want to try influencing the final outcome (good luck?).

It sounds like the biggest thing going for us (in terms of the forum anyway) right now is lack of enforcement due to jurisdiction (and potentially our limited reach compared to sites like youtube).  People who posts videos on youtube or other widely use video and/or streaming platforms would indeed be potentially impacted by those platforms' compliance measures towards these new laws, but from my understanding shouldn't have impact to the forum even if someone post links here to the videos/streams on those platforms.  Hopefully those platforms would also provide some guidelines to help you work through the cases where your video/stream is getting blocked by their filters.

General Discussion / Re: music
« on: February 24, 2019, 10:02:29 pm »
By "that other video" you mean "Numa Numa" with the guy flailing his arms around to this song? ;)

That completely passed me by originally.

Yup, that one. :D And it's completely opposite for me, until your post the only reference I ever had to that song was the numa numa video.  And it even took namida making a reply for me to actually pay attention and went to the youtube link in your post, to see what the fuss was.  And then I still had to wait past like the first 30 or so seconds of filler in the video before the recognizable "maya-hee" part finally shows up and I'm like, "oh, that". ;P

General Discussion / Re: music
« on: February 24, 2019, 09:04:56 am »
I think Strato might be talking about its reach before that other youtube video went viral?

Does make me wonder whether songs/music in non-English language usually takes a viral video (sometimes that can be the official music video of course) to achieve worldwide fame?

General Discussion / Re: Dreams
« on: February 20, 2019, 05:53:06 am »
Well Ramon, that was certain hilarious. :o :P  You certainly didn't hold back; not sure I would share such details like peeing in Simon's kitchen in view of Forestidia. :-\

That said, it doesn't really sound too different from how I imagine a Simon visit would go--once you replace all the outrageous dream details with more normal happenings of course. :D  Like maybe you were throwing something into the garbage bin in the kitchen instead of peeing in a barrier-less toilet. :XD:

If the tracking side isn't such a big deal, perhaps it could be tracked and saved but not displayed in the interface, with users who are interested able to obtain the information by opening userdata.nxsv in a text editor.

I'd second this.  If it's already possible (or trivial to implement) to store multiple record details for one level in userdata.nxsv and it's ok to have a little bit of bloat (which I think is negligible in practice anyway), it'd make sense to consider a system that may track more than what you currently display, so we have a separation between the data and the UI, and can iterate on the UI over time based on what people like to see.

Assume we've already decided on the set of statistics of interest (ie. from the thread, we have "lemmings saved", "skill used", "time to meeting save requirement").  Each solution then produces a potential record consisting of the combination of values of the statistics that the solution achieves.  The list of existing records for the level will then be managed as follows:

1) If the potential record improves on at least one statistic (could be worse/equal in other statistics) compared to at least one existing record, or if this is the very first solution so the list is empty, then we add it to the list of records.  If this condition isn't met then it means every existing record beats this potential record across all statistics, ie. no improvements whatsoever, so we're done.
2) also, if this new record is better or equal in all statistics to an existing record, then any such existing record has been completely superceded by this new record, and all such records will be removed from the list.
3) finally, for each statistic, we calculate the best value seen for that statistic across the updated list of records.  Any records in the list that does not achieve a best value in at least one statistic will be removed from the list. (Not sure if this rule might also make #2 redundant, I suspect so but don't feel like working it out.) [edit: not redundant]

The UI should be able to work out what to display by suitably sorting the list according to the statistics in some ranked ordering (eg. "most saved", then "fewest skills", then fastest), and pick out the resulting best record.  Similarly, the user can potentially copy-paste the list of records from userdata.nxsv into a spreadsheet program and performs the same kind of manipulation there manually to determine the result they need.

We may be keeping more data then is strictly necessary even to support all possible schemes of ranking of the statistics, but I think the above rules should help manage a good deal of possible bloat compared to a more naive scheme that keeps all records or only handles rules #1 and #2, and is still simple enough from an implementation standpoint.

Perhaps instead of trying to figure out which replay should or should not update your records, what we need is sort of a special "view only" mode for replays that the user can use on demand, so the user tells you what they want at the moment.  In this mode, you cannot interrupt the replay at any point to stop the replaying and start inserting new moves (or perhaps upon such an attempt, the player could pause, warn and prompt, to give user a chance to confirm exiting out of "view only" mode into normal mode), and records are not updated.

The main downside is it still relies on user remembering to use this mode, but I feel like for users who are most worried about this problem, they are most likely to remember as well.  You could perhaps further help by having the option in the level selection UI to start a level in this mode, in which case the game will also automatically prompt for a replay to load upon level start, as a further differentiation from starting a level in normal mode.  Basically, the goal would be to habituate user into using this mode for all the cases where they intend to merely see someone else's replay, versus playing the level for real themselves.

Yeah, ordering definitely matters for these kinds of checks, because some cases may satisfy multiple checks but usually only one of the corresponding messages is most appropriate .  For reference, this post described the exact ordering of checks that the original Lemmings 1 game performs to determine which message to show (ie. it stops at the first check that is satisfied and displays the corresponding message associated with that check).  Might be good to take a closer look at how NeoLemmix's programming orders the checks it performs.  If it's based directly on the ordering of entries in postview.nxmi, I'd suggest to try reordering the entries in the file to match the original game's ordering of checks.

Bugs & Suggestions / Re: [BUG][PLAYER]Erroneous "Time Taken" calculation
« on: February 01, 2019, 07:15:12 am »
To be fair, I only learned about this from participating in the level solving contest round 1 and how we handled rankings for that round.  Doesn't help that the post-level screen doesn't explicitly say "time taken to fulfill save requirement" (or similar, but I do understand how difficult it might be to phrase it tersely on such a screen).  Granted, I don't play NeoLemmix much so I'm sure it had been talked about way back when the feature was first implemented to keep records of your "best" attempts, and thus is probably more familiar for the regular players.

You could make an argument that it might be of interest sometimes to also see other related time metrics, like time when last lemming exited or even total time consumed before leaving the level.  Maybe not on the main post-level screen, but some way for the player to optionally go to somewhere that can show these other results.

Site Discussion / Re: Ability to delete your own posts?
« on: January 31, 2019, 12:46:13 am »
There is an admin setting under Forum > Boards that (based on the terse help text) appears to turn "delete" of topics and posts into "recycling" (which I guess means moving) such deleted topics and posts to a specific board.  Obviously we haven't tried it, but if it works the way I imagine, presumably this offers a way to undelete.  There is also a "remove old posts" manual forum maintenance action that can conceivably be utilized for a sort of "empty the recycle bin" action for such a recycling board.

That said, I do tend to echo geoo in that the need to delete an entire topic is infrequent enough, "just ask a mod to do it" seems a reasonably sufficient option.

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