Poll

Slider speed?

3px per frame (equal to faller)
2px per frame (equal to floater)
1px per frame (equal to floater in updraft, or to horizontal speed of walker)

Author Topic: [DISC][PLAYER] Slider physics (potential)  (Read 3447 times)

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Offline ccexplore

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[DISC][PLAYER] Slider physics (potential)
« on: March 16, 2020, 07:12:35 pm »
Split off from "Final new skill" topic after reply #28. Please keep all discussion of how the Slider might work in this topic rather than the other one.

This topic is more a "rough throw-around-ideas topic", a more streamlined topic to discuss specifics, akin to the current Jumper topic, will come if / when the decision is made to go with Slider for the 20th skill.


Slider interaction spreadsheet: https://1drv.ms/x/s!Am6NTdy4vnPXhINGmY0v7N79mUDDkA



similarly if multiple very strong candidates come up (they might even interact or complement each other in some way) then adding more than 1 is preferable.

I get that, but I don't think namida has the time or inclination at this point to implement more than 1, all that talk about an impending "final version" makes that clear. ;)

I will say though, it may be worth considering forgoing a 20th skill if it means instead adding some other new non-skill element to the game.
« Last Edit: November 06, 2020, 10:10:17 pm by namida »

Offline Strato Incendus

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Slider physics (potential)
« Reply #1 on: March 17, 2020, 04:41:14 pm »
Quote
in conjunction with the shimmier it can climb on the underside of platforms

:lem-shocked: I had completely forgotten about that! *mind-blown*

I only considered the case of sliding through a gap, that gap being closed above the Slider's head by a Platformer or Builder, and then turning that lemming into a Shimmier. Which seemed like a total corner case (pun intended, because any lemming transitioning from Climber / Slider to Shimmier goes around a corner :P ).

But transitioning from a Slider to a Shimmier at the bottom of a vertical drop, i.e. at the last possible frame before the Slider lets go of the wall and turns back into a Faller, this will be extremely useful!

So far you always have to do a workaround with such terrain shapes, sending one lemming ahead, turning him into a Stoner, then having a second lemming follow. Then you face the additional challenge of turning that second lemming around on the Stoner, then he needs to build / platform a little to get under the ceiling, and only then can he start shimmying.

As much as I like the Laser Blaster, I think I'm completely on the side of the Slider now! :thumbsup:

All three "destroy terrain at distance" skills, actually (Laser Blaster, Bazooker, and Mortar) really seem more like a nice gimmick to have, whereas the Slider would in fact create some more unexplored puzzle opportunities. Or, more accurately even, it would transfer established puzzle opportunities that have already been tried and approved of in custom L2 packs to NeoLemmix!

I'd also be happy to have the Slider as yet another permanent skill, so that it can create these interesting "how-often-does-he-turn-around" conundrums. That's the way anyone who has played a good deal of L2 (original and/or custom) is used to, anyway - and it would allow for more puzzles along the line of ONML's "Take care, sweetie", or Nepster's "Introducing: Climbers", where it all comes down to when exactly you assign this permanent skill - otherwise it will ruin your entire plan... :evil:
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Pit Lems (Old Formats), a more puzzly one, 100 levels - Let's Played by nin10doadict
Lemmicks, a pack for (very old) NeoLemmix 1.43 full of gimmicks, 170 levels

Offline Strato Incendus

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Slider physics (potential)
« Reply #2 on: March 20, 2020, 06:55:32 pm »
One question we should probably discuss:

What happens if a lemming is simultaneously a Climber and a Slider and jumps towards a wall? Does he climb up or slide down? ;)

If the Slider is not a permanent skill, i.e. other than in L2, it should probably override the Climber for the duration of its assignment. Meaning, if you assign a Slider to a Climber stuck to a wall, that lemming will stop climbing and slide down instead.

However, if the Slider remains a permanent skill, it isn't clear in which direction the lemming should move when hitting a wall neither at the bottom nor the top, but somewhere in the middle. ???

One could argue that the Climber moves "forwards" and the Slider "backwards", therefore the default assumption after jumping at the wall would be climbing. If it were possible to assign Walkers and Cloners to Climbers, those could then create Sliders in the opposite direction. However, so far you can't assign either of those two skills to Climbers, and introducing this together with the Slider might result in post-hoc backroutes.

It would of course be possible to say "Assigning Walkers / Cloners to Climbers on walls is only possible if that Climber is also a Slider".

Also, there's the issue that a Climber-Slider can trap himself on a wall that touches the ground: Once the Slider reaches the bottom, he will look towards the wall, i.e. immediately start climbing again, and slide down again when reaching the top (unless you make him a Shimmier there). And since you can't assign a Walker to a Climber, there's no way to get him out of that loop at the bottom. Thus, there would have to be at least one frame of the lemming being a Walker standing on the ground (so that he can be turned around with a Walker / Builder etc.) between him being a Slider and a Climber.

Does anyone know how this is handled in Lemmings 2?
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Offline ccexplore

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Slider physics (potential)
« Reply #3 on: March 20, 2020, 07:40:36 pm »
What happens if a lemming is simultaneously a Climber and a Slider and jumps towards a wall? Does he climb up or slide down? ;)

As far as L2 goes, if I remember correctly, the transition to sliding only happens at the point the lemming walked past the edge.  Basically instead of transitioning from walking to falling, it would transition to sliding.  Jumping a slider against the wall will not allow it to start sliding.

That being said, for NeoLemmix we could consider allowing a jumper->slider transition.  Climbing will be prioritized over sliding if the lemming has both, because I think the climbing case is more applicable in most situations--though perhaps you could decide the opposite if you want the lemming to be intentionally handicapped when it has both skills.

Offline namida

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Slider physics (potential)
« Reply #4 on: March 20, 2020, 08:20:03 pm »
Aside from "slider is non-permanent", there is also the option of Slider and Climber being mutually exclusive. This would also keep the limit for one single lemming at 4 permanent skills, despite 6 existing. (Currently limited to 4 because, although 5 exist, Floater and Glider are mutually exclusive. You can have them in the same level, but you can't assign both to the same lemming.)

Offline Strato Incendus

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Slider physics (potential)
« Reply #5 on: March 20, 2020, 09:39:21 pm »
I would definitely argue against Climber and Slider being mutually exclusive, simply because of the interesting paths both can create in conjunction: A lemming can climb up a wall on the right, turn into a Shimmier to go to the left, slide down a wall on the left, and then at the bottom of that slide go back around the corner by transitioning back into a Shimmier. Combine this with the 2-way Jumper-Climber interactions and you can easily create paths that "skilled" lemmings can follow but the crowd can't.

And that is basically the point of a lot of levels. While I still get the feeling that "pioneer" is somewhat of a negative term here (because it has the connotation of the entire complexity of a level being reduced down to the actions of a single lemming while everyone else is contained safely), even a lot of the more challenging levels still require 2-4 "worker" lemmings, often in conjunction. And the fact that these workers can often take completely different paths than the crowd is what makes these levels significantly more interesting; because another thing that tends to make "pioneer" levels boring is if they're just carving out the exact same path the crowd will take later on.

One-way arrows, Swimmers, Gliders, Floaters, Shimmiers, all of these are common ways to allow worker lemmings to approach an obstacle from the opposite side, in order to create a path that the crowd couldn't create by themselves, even with enough distance between the lemmings - because the terrain simply isn't shaped in a regular lemming's favour.

Climbers and Sliders would provide many further such interesting interactions with each other, and those would only get extended even further by the combination with Jumpers and Shimmiers.

Quote
As far as L2 goes, if I remember correctly, the transition to sliding only happens at the point the lemming walked past the edge.  Basically instead of transitioning from walking to falling, it would transition to sliding.  Jumping a slider against the wall will not allow it to start sliding.

Ah, okay, thanks a lot for the information! ;)

In other words: It's the "wall-jumping" part that's creating the problem, or, more accurately: The ambition to have Sliders interact with Jumpers as well, not just Climbers. For Climbers, it's pretty much a given at this point that they are going to interact with Jumpers both ways.

Personally, I quite like the idea of having to e.g. jump across a gap in order to reach a wall a lemming can hold on to that allows him to slide down an otherwise lethal drop safely.

That said, if we had to "ban" one interaction and I had to choose between Jumper-Slider and Slider-Climber (the latter by making both of these permanent skills mutually exclusive), I would probably rather stick to the L2 behaviour and sacrifice the Jumper-Slider interaction:
a) For consistency with L2 (for players switching from Kieran et al.'s custom L2 content to NeoLemmix, this can indeed be relevant!), but more importantly
b) because the Slider-Shimmier interaction is more important and revolutionary to me. Since the other main skill that interacts with Shimmiers is the Climber, I don't want to be forced to choose whether I can have only Climber-Shimmier- or Slider-Shimmier interactions with a given lemming.

But I think the case of the Slider being a temporary "movement" skill, like the Jumper and Shimmier as well (and the Walker, technically, counts too), can also be made, and actually only becomes stronger by going through these examples.

Much like the Jumper assigned to a Climber doesn't stop the lemming from being a Climber, but merely tells him "stop doing what your new default state tells you to do, and do this now instead!",
a Slider would tell him "stop climbing for now and slide down instead, but once you reach the next wall, you'll climb up as usual / once you reach the next straight drop, you fall looking forward, like a regular Faller".

In other words, the Slider would become the logical extension to the Jumper, in that both of these skills would be the only non-lethal skills you could assign to a climbing Climber.

As it currently stands, the Jumper is the only non-lethal skill that can be assigned to a Climber. But with that skill already being a precedent, there is nothing stopping other "movement skills" from behaving the same way.

If the Slider became such a non-permanent "movement skill", just like with Shimmiers, I think it should still be possible to have pre-placed Sliders in a level, as well.
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Lemmicks, a pack for (very old) NeoLemmix 1.43 full of gimmicks, 170 levels

Offline Proxima

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Slider physics (potential)
« Reply #6 on: March 20, 2020, 10:03:00 pm »
I would definitely argue against Climber and Slider being mutually exclusive, simply because of the interesting paths both can create in conjunction

That could still work if they were mutually exclusive, if we have the suggested "remove permanent skills" object 8-)

Quote
In other words: It's the "wall-jumping" part that's creating the problem, or, more accurately: The ambition to have Sliders interact with Jumpers as well, not just Climbers. For Climbers, it's pretty much a given at this point that they are going to interact with Jumpers both ways.

Personally, I quite like the idea of having to e.g. jump across a gap in order to reach a wall a lemming can hold on to that allows him to slide down an otherwise lethal drop safely.

I agree; Jumper -> Slider makes sense and would be an interesting interaction. I don't think we need to "ban" one or the other just because of the Jumper -> Climber or Slider? problem; we just need a consistent rule for whether the Climber or Slider takes priority. Right now I don't have a strong feeling on this; I'll think about it some more when it's not late in the evening.

Quote
But I think the case of the Slider being a temporary "movement" skill, like the Jumper and Shimmier as well (and the Walker, technically, counts too), can also be made, and actually only becomes stronger by going through these examples.

If it comes down to a vote on whether the Slider should be permanent or not, that would be an extremely hard decision for me; both have distinct advantages that would be lost with the other option, but we can only have one.

Quote
Much like the Jumper assigned to a Climber doesn't stop the lemming from being a Climber ... a Slider would tell him "stop climbing for now and slide down instead, but once you reach the next wall, you'll climb up as usual / once you reach the next straight drop, you fall looking forward, like a regular Faller".

In other words, the Slider would become the logical extension to the Jumper, in that both of these skills would be the only non-lethal skills you could assign to a climbing Climber.

I am, however, quite sure I would vote against assigning (non-permanent) Slider to a Climber to make him stop sliding immediately. For whatever reason, it just doesn't sit right with me. Partly because you can't assign walker there; partly because I'm used to the L2 idea that the Slider is primarily for sliding from the top of a wall, even if we accept Jumper -> Slider transitions.

Offline ccexplore

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Slider physics (potential)
« Reply #7 on: March 21, 2020, 12:23:35 am »
Someone needs to explain to me how a non-permanent slider would work especially in the basic use case, where a walking lemming reaches the edge of a fall and transitions instead to sliding down the ledge, facing opposite direction from before.

Normally a non-permanent skill would make the lemming immediately start doing stuff when assigned.  I'd hope that for a non-permanent slider, it wouldn't require the lemming to be pixel-exact at the very edge for assignment to take effect.  But if not, then what does the transition look like starting from assignment (where lemming is still at least a few pixels away from the ledge) to actually sliding down?  What are the rules during that transition?

One can also imagine perhaps a hybrid handling, where you can assign the skill at any time and then the effect only starts kicking in when the lemming actually reaches the edge of a fall (so basically just like a normal permanent skill), but upon the completion of the slide down, the lemming also loses the ability to slide again until you assign the skill again.  This could work but would behave nothing like any of the other skills in the game, and thus feels unnecessarily confusing to me.

Offline Proxima

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Slider physics (potential)
« Reply #8 on: March 21, 2020, 12:33:41 am »
I imagine it would be like the NL platformer: when it begins the skill is (often) pixel-precise, but since NL allows skills to be "queued" (if a skill assignation is impossible, it will be remembered for half a second and carried out if it becomes possible) then the player has some leeway as to when they need to click on the lemming.

(Note: NL platformers are not always pixel-precise, since the criterion is that the lemming should have terrain under his feet, but none under his feet and just ahead. This will be at a precise moment if walking on flat terrain and about to reach a gap, but assignment is possible at any time when walking down a slope.)

Offline ccexplore

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Slider physics (potential)
« Reply #9 on: March 21, 2020, 12:41:58 am »
Ah okay, forgot that NL has assignment queueing implemented.  Then I guess the same does work pretty well for a non-permanent slider just as it does for the platformer.

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Slider physics (potential)
« Reply #10 on: March 21, 2020, 05:05:32 am »
After reading the above comments, it seems the best option would be to have the Slider as a non-permanent movement skill that can be assigned to a Climber (in the same way that a Jumper can).

As I imagine it, the effect would be to turn the lemming around slightly so they're facing half-away from the wall, but instead of falling, they slide. Upon landing, the lemming would walk away from the wall.

You get the best of all worlds that way:

Possibility to have the same lemming climb, shimmy, then slide (or any combination of those)...

Possibility to assign a Slider for one lemming for one drop, but then require other splat-prevention skills for any other drops in the level (or to put it another way, we'd now have a non-permanent way to get a single lemming down from a height)...

Possibility to turn a Climber around that's going up a wall you don't want them to go up...

No need to lose the Jumper>Slider interaction...

Less new rules to learn...

I'm sure there's more. :lemcat:

Offline ccexplore

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Slider physics (potential)
« Reply #11 on: March 21, 2020, 11:49:32 am »
Jumping a slider against the wall will not allow it to start sliding.

I finally got around to testing this on DOS Lemmings 2 (using the Egyptian practice level).  Turns out I remembered wrong, jumping a slider against the wall does allow it to slide down the wall.

In the case that both climber and slider are assigned to the lemming, and lemming gets into a situation where both skills can be used, looks like climber takes priority in Lemmings 2--in the wall jumping case above, the lemming would climb up.  But note that it doesn't mean if you have a non-climber slider lemming who is currently in the middle of sliding down a wall, and you assign it climber then, it doesn't stop the sliding and make it climb back up again, it will continue sliding down.

=================

As I imagine it, the effect would be to turn the lemming around slightly so they're facing half-away from the wall, but instead of falling, they slide. Upon landing, the lemming would walk away from the wall.

geoo specifically mentioned the turning around at a floating bottom of a cliff (ie. facing at the wall that the lemming slid down, rather than away from it) as crucial to the skill's puzzle potential, and you certainly need that if you want to let the lemming shimmy along the bottom of the wall after sliding down to it.

In Lemmings 2, it is clearly depicted that during the starting transition at the top from walking to sliding, that the lemming turns to face the wall as he starts sliding down.  I suppose you could delay that turning around until he reached the bottom and has opportunity to shimmy, but I don't really see a compelling reason to do it like that rather than like in Lemmings 2.  In Lemmings 2, if the bottom of the wall connects to ground (so the lemming can actually land), the lemming will turn around again to face away from the wall as he lands and transitions to walker.

Offline geoo

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Slider physics (potential)
« Reply #12 on: March 21, 2020, 11:54:16 am »
After reading the above comments, it seems the best option would be to have the Slider as a non-permanent movement skill that can be assigned to a Climber (in the same way that a Jumper can). You get the best of all worlds that way.
Strongly disagree here. Most of the value of the slider in QFK to me came from the fact that it would always slide (and in particular turn around at the bottom of the slide unless it is a corner), requiring you to carefully plan around this, and allowing to separate a single lemming from a crowd multiple times. Similarly, like for climber puzzles, it can require you to force one and the same lemming to go to multiple places to do a slider-only action.

Also while a lot of the discussion seems to be focusing on surviving long falls, during play that seemed to be a minor aspect to me, while turning around or getting to the underside of blocks to shimmy along was much more important.

Possibility to have the same lemming climb, shimmy, then slide (or any combination of those)...
I don't see how a permanent version wouldn't allow for this?

If a shimmying (or climbing) slider reaches a corner with a wall facing down (like in the sketch below), the slider can just slide down that wall. If I recall correctly that's also the behaviour in L2.
Code: [Select]
XXXX
XXXX
.SXX
..XX

Btw just curious, in NeoLemmix, if a shimmying climber reaches the end of a platform (i.e. a corner with a wall facing up like below), does it climb up the wall? I assume not?
Code: [Select]
..XX
..XX
.S..
....

Possibility to assign a Slider for one lemming for one drop, but then require other splat-prevention skills for any other drops in the level (or to put it another way, we'd now have a non-permanent way to get a single lemming down from a height)...
That sounds more like a disadvantage to me? If you wanted a lemming to come down a splat fall twice, just assign the floater from the beginning, and the slider is useless unless you want to exploit on of its other features?

No need to lose the Jumper>Slider interaction...
To me this seems to be the only challenge with a permanent slider. And it can be resolved by choosing which to prioritize when a slider/climber jumps into a wall. (My suggestion would be the climber? If a wall the lemming jumps to tops out in a ceiling, it will still slide down afterwards. The reverse wouldn't work.)

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Slider physics (potential)
« Reply #13 on: March 21, 2020, 02:33:19 pm »
Most of the value of the slider in QFK to me came from the fact that it would always slide... requiring you to carefully plan around this, and allowing to separate a single lemming from a crowd multiple times. Similarly, like for climber puzzles, it can require you to force one and the same lemming to go to multiple places to do a slider-only action.

Seems, then, that the Slider being non-permanent would also remove the need to concentrate on a single worker lemming, thus opening up even more puzzle potential and avoiding one-worker levels.

Also while a lot of the discussion seems to be focusing on surviving long falls, during play that seemed to be a minor aspect to me, while turning around or getting to the underside of blocks to shimmy along was much more important.

Good point, but I see no reason that non-permanent Sliders couldn't also do this.

If you wanted a lemming to come down a splat fall twice, just assign the floater from the beginning, and the slider is useless unless you want to exploit on of its other features?

Absolutely, but there may be situations where you don't want the lemming to be a permanent Floater (they may need to be a Glider later on, or vice versa): so, you can have them be a Slider for just the one drop. It opens up more choice for both level designer and player.

...which to prioritize when a slider/climber jumps into a wall. (My suggestion would be the climber? If a wall the lemming jumps to tops out in a ceiling, it will still slide down afterwards. The reverse wouldn't work.)

I agree with this, definitely, and just generally with the idea that a Climber overrides a Slider if both are permanent. However, I think that it would be preferable to be able to use the Slider to override the Climber action. So, in effect:

Climber lemming jumps towards a wall, grabs onto it, starts climbing. You assign a Slider and the lemming slides back down the wall at the point the skill is assigned: they would then have to land before they can climb again. If the climb tops out at a ceiling and the climber hits their head, you'd have to assign the Slider for the lem to safely slide back down (similar to the Climber>Shimmier transition), but the effect is the same.

More movement possibility, more potential, opens up the game in new ways. This would only work if the Slider were a non-permanent skill that could be used to temporarily "cancel" the Climber skill.

Offline Strato Incendus

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Slider physics (potential)
« Reply #14 on: March 21, 2020, 05:05:41 pm »
Quote
Btw just curious, in NeoLemmix, if a shimmying climber reaches the end of a platform (i.e. a corner with a wall facing up like below), does it climb up the wall? I assume not?

Just to quickly clarify this: No, it does not. The Shimmier stops as soon as it detects an altitude increase of 2 pixels or more over just 1 pixels in width. It also doesn't turn around.

The shape of terrain you describe, though very common, can't even be handled by a Rock Climber in Lemmings 2. A Rock Climber could only handle a 45 ° slope followed by a straight wall (something the Shimmier can't do, since it can only do the reverse option, i.e. first a wall, then a slope or ceiling).

The only L2 skill that would be able to go from a ceiling around a corner and up a wall (rather than down like a Slider) would be the Magno Booter. But namida has already ruled out that one for complexity of coding.

Quote
If a wall the lemming jumps to tops out in a ceiling, it will still slide down afterwards. The reverse wouldn't work.)

Since all level edges are deadly in New Formats, we would have to assume a solid ceiling of terrain at the top of that climb, therefore also solid ground at the bottom for this comparison.

And in that case, once the Slider touches solid ground, he will look towards the wall, i.e. immediately start climbing up again. So the reverse would indeed work, wouldn't it? ;)

This is precisely what I meant about a permanent Climber-Slider trapping himself in a loop where he repeatedly goes up and down the same wall without ever turning around.

A regular Slider would of course turn around on the wall he slid down immediately after completing his slide, but a Climber-Slider wouldn't.
My packs so far:
Lemmings World Tour (New & Old Formats), my music-themed flagship pack, 320 levels - Let's Played by Colorful Arty
Lemmings Open Air, my newest release and follow-up to World Tour, 120 levels
Paralems (Old Formats), a more flavour-driven one, 150 levels
Pit Lems (Old Formats), a more puzzly one, 100 levels - Let's Played by nin10doadict
Lemmicks, a pack for (very old) NeoLemmix 1.43 full of gimmicks, 170 levels