Author Topic: .lvl and .dat: How to play and edit  (Read 763 times)

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Offline Simon

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.lvl and .dat: How to play and edit
« on: April 03, 2017, 11:18:51 am »
This topic deals with the ancient level format for DOS Lemmings. Level files in this format end with .lvl, 10-level-packs end with .dat.

Consider NeoLemmix or Lix: DOS Lemmings's .lvl/.dat format was popular around 2000 to 2010 for custom levels. Since 2014, the most popular engines are NeoLemmix and Lix. We encourage you to create new levels for these games.

Play old Lemmings games: This topic is about custom levels. If you want to play DMA's old Lemmings, Oh no! More Lemmings, Holiday Lemmings, ..., get a Lemmix player, or run the old games in DOSBox. You don't have to set up Lemmix editor.

See also the 2013 list of game engines and editors.

Lemmix + Eric's Lemmix editor

Lemmix is a lemmings clone that comes with a level editor and is probably your best choice for playing custom levels in .lvl and .dat format, like most of those on the level database, as these levels were designed for Lemmix/CustLemm physics and might not work in other clones. Due to the physics it's also a good choice for the challenges from the Challenges Board. Lemmix features saving and loading replays, savestates and a few more convenient features. Setting it up is a bit complicated, and it has no music.

Link: http://ericenzwaan.nl/eric/lemmings/lemmix.htm

Setup

Get CustLemm which essentially merges the graphics files from Lemmings and ONML. Extract Lemmix and open the file LemmixStyles.ini. Navigate to [style_9], and two lines below you should find "CommonPath=". Enter the path where CustLemm is located there. (Optional: If you have the original game and/or ONML, find [style_0] and [style_1] and put the paths to Lemmings and ONML there respectively. This will allow you to play the original and ONML levels.)

Now run Lemmix, and go to Tools -> Compiler. Select 'Custom Lemmings' and click 'compile all graphics sets for this style'. (Optional: you can do the same for Original Lemmings and ONML.)

Usage

When opening a .lvl file, you'll be prompted to select a viewer style. Select 'Custom Lemmings' there. When opening a .dat file, you'll be presented with a level list. Right-click on that dialog, select 'change viewer style' and select 'Custom Lemmings'.

To play a level, open it and press [F2]. Press [u] to save a replay of your solution. Press [Shift]+[R] to load a replay during play; make sure you are already playing the correct level.

CustLemmix

CustLemmix plays custom level packs from the level database with the Lemmix Player. Switching between packs is less convenient than with Lemmix: Rename the level pack to LEVELPAK.DAT (or whatever name you specify in the .ini) and put the pack in the CustLemmix folder.
Link: http://www.lemmingsforums.net/index.php?topic=1781.0

CustLemm, LemEdit

Obsolete since 2007, but historically important. Both of these run in DosBox. CustLemm is a hack of ONML that loads any given LEVELPAK.DAT instead of the ONML-included levels. See the included readme for instructions.

Link: http://www.camanis.net/lemmings/leveleditors.php

Amiga

Creating and playing custom levels in Amiga Lemmings.

Link: http://www.lemmingsforums.net/index.php?topic=1206.msg32683#msg32683

-- Simon
« Last Edit: April 06, 2017, 01:29:48 pm by Simon »