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Messages - namida

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NeoLemmix Main / Re: NL installer is considered deprecated.
« on: December 04, 2021, 06:39:19 PM »
Right, it's good to offer the game download. The game can fetch a lot itself afterwards.

-- Simon

The game comes packaged with NeoLemmix Introduction Pack (which requires further style downloads after the first rank, but all of them are within what the in-game manager can acquire) and Redux (no additional downloads required, either automated or otherwise), too, so players can get started out-of-the-box.

Tech & Research / Re: Lemmings 2 Data Formats
« on: December 04, 2021, 06:38:15 PM »
I believe Lemmix was able to replicate the L1 physics exactly by using a disassembly and translating parts of it into Pascal, basically. I guess EricLang and ccexplore would be the people to know more about this. I don't know if anyone looked into disassembling L2, if anyone, I guess ccexplore would be the person to ask, though he hasn't been active in a while.

It was more like a clean room implementation - ccexplore used disassembly to figure out the exact physics, then described these to EricLang, who then implemented them with his own code.

This did initially lead to a couple of inconsistencies between DOS and Lemmix. Later patches by ccexplore and myself fixed some of these ("fixed" in the sense of "made Lemmix behave the same way as DOS") - most notably the nuke glitch but two other particularly notable ones are the pause-for-time glitch, and an inaccuracy in how long traps take to reset.

Tech & Research / Re: Lemmings 2 Data Formats
« on: December 02, 2021, 08:53:48 PM »
Are you intending to replicate L2's physics exactly, or just to create a game that feels the same to the user (but might not exactly match how L2 works)?

Just because - if it's the latter case, I would suggest comparing your project to Lemmini rather than Lemmix, as one of Lemmix's most defining features is that it attempts to reproduce L1's physics exactly. (NeoLemmix and Lix would be even worse comparisons due to the additional features in the former, and open-source-overhaul nature of the latter.) That's not to knock it in any way - an L2-like game with QoL features and playable on modern platforms could definitely breathe some new life into the game - I'm just suggesting a wording that might give people a more accurate idea of what you're aiming for.

With that said, and to address this one specifically: sure, you can place an exit that only Climbers can reach, but this is not an adequate simulation of a "Climbers only" exit; there must surely be an exit somewhere else in the level that non-Climbers can reach, so why not just send all of the lemmings there?

Because it requires another skill that needs to be given to non-Climbers, or because it is an exit that Climbers (instead of non-Climbers) can't reach. (This latter case of course can only really be done with Climbers, Gliders or Sliders.)

I strongly disagree, and I find the "it can be simulated" argument generally a very dreary and lazy counterpoint

It's not all that common that a single argument determines the entire decision (and exceptions to this tend to be either "accepted because it's an extremely useful and simple to implement idea" or "rejected because it very obviously goes against the spirit of NL"). It's one point that gets taken into account, that shifts the balance in one direction or another. Keeping in mind that NeoLemmix is something that must be coded by someone (generally me, though others have contributed in the past, in particular Nepster), and not a magic box where you can simply request a feature and it appears at no cost to anyone; as well as that players must keep in mind how every object that exists works and how to differentiate between them even if the objects themself could be magicked out of thin air; it becomes about not just what can be done or is marginally beneficial, but what's really worth putting the time and effort into, and expecting the players to also put their time and effort into learning to interact with.

As I have mentioned before - at one point, NeoLemmix did indeed approach things with a "if I can think of it, in it goes!" approach. This just lead to too many features, some of which were rarely used and/or downright bad in hindsight, and many of which eventually caused a mess (and for a while, people refusing to update to new versions in protest, though thankfully people seem to have moved on from that now...) when they needed to be culled.

Lix Main / Re: Slow additions or experimental fork
« on: December 02, 2021, 06:36:37 AM »
Format breakages in NeoLemmix have almost always lead to issues, including people coming along many years later with content they never got around to updating the format of - or worse, creating content for old versions when they're already long-since-obsolete.

This isn't to say "don't do it". Just "proceed with caution". Presumably, Lix would keep backwards-compatibility, and it would only be a problem for older versions loading newer levels. In this case, the user should update their software.

New Objects / Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Potential new object - Portals
« on: December 02, 2021, 06:34:10 AM »
If animated, presumably there is the option to make the animation as long or short as the designer wishes, meaning that the option for a more instant effect is still present within the design.

No. The "warping" state would be a property of the lemming, and - much like how many frames a builder or climber takes to place a brick / move - be constant and not open to change by any means. This is not up for debate. The actual graphic of the animation would be either global (ie: not customizable, except by modding NL's data files), or part of the lemming spriteset.

NeoLemmix Main / Re: NL installer is considered deprecated.
« on: December 02, 2021, 06:31:48 AM »
Ah, duh.

I need to give that site one hell of an overhaul at some point, really... or at least an update. The downloads are very up to date as that's where they're hosted, but everything else about the site tends to be fairly neglected.

For now, I've replaced that with a "Download NeoLemmix" link. (This link will always download the latest stable version, and doesn't need to be manually updated for new versions.)

New Objects / Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Potential new object - Portals
« on: December 01, 2021, 06:22:31 PM »
Does "Instant" preclude having a visual indicator at all on the source teleporter that a lemming has teleported or is it possible to have an effect play at the moment the teleport happens (e.g. some sparks or something) whilst still preserving the behaviour where the lemming immediately exits the other side?

It doesn't rule it out, though some thought would need to be given about how well it'd work especially if a whole heap of lemmings hit the portal at once.

This could even go as far, potentially, as a "portal animates when a lemming enters it, like a triggered object, but still behaves like a constant one". I'm not saying this will happen - in particular, it breaks the convention that "if an object does something when a lemming reaches it, the object is either single-use or one-lemming-at-a-time" (and one could argue single-use is in fact just a special case of one-lemming-at-a-time), which is especially of concern given that teleporters are a similar object that is one-lemming-at-a-time - but on a technical level at least, it could be considered. In much the same way, this could also be extended to the receiving portal as well (provided that, if they're bi-directional, the sending and receiving animation are the same - too complex otherwise).

New Objects / Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Potential new object - Portals
« on: December 01, 2021, 05:49:25 PM »
I'm going to put up a poll for the "instant" vs "short animation" behavior, and whether it's one-way or bidirectional. Please read this before voting - and in particular note that "short animation" is NOT the same thing as the triggered behavior of the teleporters.

Firstly - this is two different matters. That's why I've put options for every combination, including a "don't care" option. And just to avoid doubt - I will be looking at the votes on each matter individually, not just looking at which combination has the most votes. Or in other words - when I decide on one-way vs bidirectional, I'll ignore the "instant vs animated" part of the votes when tallying up results; and vice versa.

Instant - This would mean that on the frame where a lemming ("L") enters an in-portal, the lemming is transported on that same frame to the out-portal and immediately continues what he was doing.

Animated - This would mean that on the frame where a lemming ("L") enters an in-portal, the lemming would become "frozen" for a few frames and play a short warping animation - presumably half this animation would occur before being transported, and the other half after. Once this animation finishes, the lemming would go back to what it was doing before as if it was never interrupted. (This would be - in terms of visuals only - the same way Lemmings 3D handles teleporters.) This would NOT mean that other lemmings cannot use the portal at the same time - the animation is an attribute of the LEMMING, not the object.

Bidirectional - This would mean that if there are a pair of linked portals, A and B, a lemming could enter Portal A to come out of Portal B, and could also enter Portal B to come out of Portal A.

One-way - This would mean that if there are a pair of linked portals, A and B, a lemming could only enter Portal A to come out of Portal B; and could not go back through Portal B to come out at Portal A again.

Also, to be clear about a point raised earlier in the topic:
* Two-way portalling is problematic because we obviously don't want a portalled lemming to warp back on the next frame. If it's possible to get around this problem, then I think it's a good idea -- if the portal is essentially a "wormhole" connecting parts of the level that are not next to each other in normal space, then it would make sense for it to be two-way.
This can absolutely be dealt with - NeoLemmix already has to deal with this situation for splitters.

Self-explanatory. Some people have mentioned that the transition from silence to loud music is jarring and/or that they'd usually have their own music playing when designing levels (but still want music to play as normal when playing packs etc).

Technically falls outside the "no new feature suggestions" but, there are three factors that have lead to me making a special case here:
1) This is very simple to implement.
2) I can very much see the benefit of it (even if I likely wouldn't use it myself).
3) It would be possible - but much less tidy - to implement this as a feature purely in the editor (namely, by having the editor modify NL's settings INI file to set the music volume to 0 when it launches testplay mode, and back to normal afterwards). I'd rather do it the clean way.

A thought on the Neutralizer specifically: effectively, it could be argued that it's a soft trap - it doesn't KILL the lemming, you can still save it, but if you can avoid it you probably don't want your lemmings being neutralized. With that in mind, would it count as a trap when interacting with a Disarmer?

This could be argued for the single-use or triggered-infinite variants, maybe. Not so much for the infinite-constant one, I feel.

Also to be clear, triggered-infinite is ruled out at this point, as is the zombifier.

After re-reading over this topic, and the skill equivalents, I have decided to rule out infinite triggered as the style of the trap. Single-shot and infinite-constant are both still open as possibilities.

- Should a single object be able to grant multiple skills? (How often do situations arise where simply placing two objects - one for each skill - next to each other, wouldn't be suitable?)

After further thought on this one, I'm going to go with "only one skill".

- What should occur when a Floater encounters a Glider object, or vice versa? Keep the existing skill, or lose it and gain the new one?

Thinking about this - trying to assign a Floater to a Glider doesn't replace, it just can't be done. Much like assigning a Climber to an already-Climber can't be done, for example. I'd expect a one-shot or triggered assigner to ignore a lemming that already has the exact skill in question; and I'd argue consistency would suggest the same should happen for the Floater/Glider scenario.

- Should they be single-use or infinite-use?
- If infinite-use, should they be one-at-a-time (like traps) or constant (like fire / water / exits)?

These are still open questions. However - the one thing here is that I want the answer to these to be the same for both assigner and remover. However, it's still an open question whether the remover is skill-specific or remove-all.

Further to this, after re-reading over the three topics (neutral equivalent included), I've decided to rule out triggered one-at-a-time.

Engine Bugs / Suggestions / Re: [SUG] Talismans for "max N skill types"
« on: November 29, 2021, 08:57:05 PM »
Further to this, because it will be very little additional work on top of this, and quite useful, I'm going to also add "fewest skill types" to the records that NeoLemmix tracks. One line I am drawing on that though: It will purely track quantity only, not which combination(s) were used to achieve it.

EDIT: Implemented in commit 333ef40.

Engine Bugs / Suggestions / Re: [SUG] Talismans for "max N skill types"
« on: November 29, 2021, 06:22:41 PM »
Implemented in commit 8cc7fc2, with a further fix in 985b5cd.

Leaving this open because:
a) not yet properly tested
b) still need to add editor support
c) a better idea for an icon could still come up

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