Poll

What's your thoughts on the new arc (green in reply #26, also shown in reply #27)?

It's good
I could accept it but would prefer something else
I don't like it at all

Author Topic: [DISC][PLAYER] Spearer and Grenader (projectile constructive / destructive)  (Read 1516 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline namida

  • Administrator
  • Posts: 10992
    • View Profile
    • NeoLemmix Website
Creating a single topic to keep discussion in one place, since it's been a bit back-and-forwards between the two topics so far, and these skills have more in common than they do different. I might reopen the individual topics later for discussion of the unique aspects of each, but for now, the shared one is more suitable.

For reference, here are the previous topics:
- Destructive skill
- Constructive skill

Some quick notes:
- Neither skill is guaranteed to make it into a stable release, though both will at least get an experimental build, likely a single combined one for both skills.
- Skill names / graphics are not up for discussion FOR NOW. I'll come back to those points if/when the skills are confirmed; for now, the focus is physics / potential.
- Both skills will have the same arc, but what that arc is is up for discussion.
- Exact size of spear / destructive range of grenade is up for discussion.
- Lemming will transition to shrugger after throwing, rather than immediately reverting to walker.
- Skill shadows (likely not to be implemented until RC) will show both the arc and the construction / destruction.

Preview video (2020/10/28), shows the skills mostly working but with no effect (aside from disappearing) on impact: https://youtu.be/T4oAxkb7vxY (EDIT: More recent video in first reply)
« Last Edit: November 03, 2020, 07:58:06 pm by namida »

Offline namida

  • Administrator
  • Posts: 10992
    • View Profile
    • NeoLemmix Website
And a video with much more progress, now: https://youtu.be/-yyyjzB86Kw

Offline IchoTolot

  • Moderator
  • Posts: 2843
    • View Profile
Would also toss the skill name "grenadier" in the ring instead of "granader". ;)

Offline Strato Incendus

  • The King of Shimmiers (crowned by Flopsy ;D )
  • Posts: 1328
  • He who usually only makes it up to rank two
    • View Profile
Wow, this looks like a lot of progress already, namida! :thumbsup:

I guess these two skills are the easiest one to implement? Pretty much the only things missing are the skil shadow and recolouring of the spear.

I voted for "release experimental builds as soon as they are ready" on the poll; this may end up "backfiring" in my face if the Projectiles (which I favour less than Laser Blaster and Slider) end up becoming more popular simply because they get more exposure. :evil: But of course, I still want to give them a fair chance, and if the different RCs come out whenever they are ready, that gives everyone more time to test the candidates successively, spending more time on each of them than if we were "overwhelmed" by four different RCs at once.



I'm fine with the sprite on the skill panel being a modified version of the Basher in both cases; you'd probably just want to make the projectile stick out a little more on the skill panel sprite, especially for the Grenadier (which yes, I agree with IchoTolot, sounds more natural than "Grenader").

Personally, I would advocate for going with established skill names from Lemmings 2: The Tribes wherever possible. Meaning: Spear Thrower instead of Spearer (the latter sounds weird anyway). The Grenadier could be a new skill indeed if the projectile has too little resemblance with the Mortar or Bazooker. I think one argument for this is that both the Mortar and Bazooker would require a "shooting device", whereas the Grenadier just throws the projectile with his bare hand. Then again, sprites for the Mortar and Bazooker might be possible to rip from Lemmings 2? So then, the "shooting device" would already exist and wouldn't have to be sprited by hand. I'm not sure though, and I'm fine with the "bare-hands" solution, too.

In either case, whether its a Bazooka or a Grenade, I can already see that the main thing I would be doing with these skills is Lemmings going Worms. :evil: I already made some levels inspired by Worms levels ("Doo Wop" and "Staircase to Armageddon" from Paralems), and in fact, the name "Lemmings World Tour" was partly inspired by the game those earlier two levels were taken from: Worms World Party. Now obviously, neither the Grenade nor the Spear can kill Zombies by itself, but if you remove enough terrain under a crowd of Zombies or lock them in between Spears, the outcome will be similar.

Of course, that is not exactly a type of game style we would call "puzzle solving". ;) And that's why I personally don't see a lot of puzzle potential in these two skills.
I agree with IchoTolot that the arc would have to be steeper in order for the skills to be more useful:

- The Spear could be thrown higher up into walls to break a fall from above or stop a Climber from below
- The Grenade could be thrown against ceilings to stop Shimmiers, as IchoTolot said, or again into walls to make them irregular, which can also break falls from above or stop Climbers from below, as well as providing a niche for Climbers to climb into, from where they can start doing other things. (In regular Lemmings, this is usually solved by sending another Climber ahead and bombing him.)

Especially the idea of building bridges by connecting several spears, which was brought up as an argument for the skill earlier, seems very utopian currently. Obviously, skill shadows will make this easier. But especially for the Spear Thrower, the skill shadow would not only have to show the arc of movement, but also the tilt the Spear would be going to have upon landing. The orientation of the spear changes rapidly as it's traveling along its arc.

It's hard anough to chain several Archers together to form a bridge in Lemmings 2, and that skill has the added upside of allowing you to target it; since the Archer has been ruled out long ago, doing this with a Spear Thrower is going to be even harder, unless the skill shadow also predicts the orientation of the Spear itself in its final landing position.
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

Offline IchoTolot

  • Moderator
  • Posts: 2843
    • View Profile
Quote
Especially the idea of building bridges by connecting several spears, which was brought up as an argument for the skill earlier, seems very utopian currently. Obviously, skill shadows will make this easier. But especially for the Spear Thrower, the skill shadow would not only have to show the arc of movement, but also the tilt the Spear would be going to have upon landing. The orientation of the spear changes rapidly as it's traveling along its arc.

That's why I suggested the shrugger. While the lem is shrugging assign the spear/grenade again and it will have the exact same arc.

Quote
voted for "release experimental builds as soon as they are ready" on the poll; this may end up "backfiring" in my face if the Projectiles (which I favour less than Laser Blaster and Slider) end up becoming more popular simply because they get more exposure.

I think you overestimate the exposure and popularity factor here. The goal is to explore unique use cases and usability and not simply go by which skill gets the most levels made in terms of quantity or which topic gets the most comments. Also: I think I will spend quite a lot of time with the slider actually. ;)

As namida also can only code 1 thing at a time, voting for "release experimental builds as soon as they are ready" will automatically lead to there being a first and last skill anyway.

Offline Strato Incendus

  • The King of Shimmiers (crowned by Flopsy ;D )
  • Posts: 1328
  • He who usually only makes it up to rank two
    • View Profile
Quote
That's why I suggested the shrugger. While the lem is shrugging assign the spear/grenade again and it will have the exact same arc.

Yes, the exact same arc, but by the same token, almost certainly not the same tilt of the Spear. ;) After all, in the position where the first Spear landed, now there already is one. So even if the second projectile takes the exact same path, it will land earlier, that is, at the end of the first Spear, and will therefore have a different tilt / rotation. This is important because whether it points more up or down will decide whether lemmings can walk up the connected bridge of spears, or whether the connected path is high enough to access some upper layer of the level, etc.

That's why I think that, just like the Builder skill shadow contains an image of the staircase how it will look in its final form, the skill shadow for the Spear Thrower would have to include both the arc of the trajectory (like for the Jumper or Glider) AND the shape of the terrain that is going to be left behind once skill execution has been completed.
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

Offline IchoTolot

  • Moderator
  • Posts: 2843
    • View Profile
Quote
Yes, the exact same arc, but by the same token, almost certainly not the same tilt of the Spear.

Fair enough.

I have 2 proposals to address this:

1.) 2 skill shadows. The arc itself and in another color where the spear/grenade will end up.

2.) 1 skill show. Only the end location/effect of the spear/granade will be displayed.


I would prefer 1.) as the arc contains valuavble information as well.

Offline Strato Incendus

  • The King of Shimmiers (crowned by Flopsy ;D )
  • Posts: 1328
  • He who usually only makes it up to rank two
    • View Profile
I would definitely also prefer 1). After all, with the Jumper we wouldn't have been content either with just knowing the lemming's landing position. ;)
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

Offline namida

  • Administrator
  • Posts: 10992
    • View Profile
    • NeoLemmix Website
Skill shadows for these will show both the arc and the destruction / construction. However, skill shadows won't be implemented until later; probably not until an RC build.

(As a reminder on "experimental" vs "RC": Experimental builds are used to evaluate and/or bugtest a specific feature, such as in this case, new skills. RC builds are essentially pre-release builds, that will be fairly close to the corresponding stable version.)

Quote
spending more time on each of them than if we were "overwhelmed" by four different RCs at once.

It'll be three - Grenader and Spearer are expected to be a single shared experimental.

Quote
I guess these two skills are the easiest one to implement? Pretty much the only things missing are the skil shadow and recolouring of the spear.

Slider is likely to be the easiest to implement, but this one was the most fun to implement. Also, the newer video has the spear recoloring. :) Slider is likely to be the next one I do, because while there are still details under discussion for it, they're generally of the kind that's easy to change later; whereas the Laser-Blaster could get messy if I tried to implement it until we've got at least a bit more of an idea of what it might end up looking like. I'll stress that none of this is commentary on how fun or useful I expect the skills themself to be, only on how I expect the task of implementing them to be.


Also as mentioned, names, graphics, the arc, etc are not final. Basically, the only detail that should really be considered final at this stage is "both skills, if both make it in, will have the same arc as each other".
« Last Edit: October 28, 2020, 06:01:30 pm by namida »

Offline Dullstar

  • Posts: 1866
    • View Profile
    • Leafwing Studios Website (EXTREMELY OUTDATED)
I don't think I can evaluate this skill fairly without a skill shadow for at least the arc.

Offline Strato Incendus

  • The King of Shimmiers (crowned by Flopsy ;D )
  • Posts: 1328
  • He who usually only makes it up to rank two
    • View Profile
I'd agree with Dullstar here; I don't know how much effort it is to program this in advance?

Skill shadows are definitely going to be more important for projectiles than for the Laser Blaster (although the range factor is present with the Laser Blaster as well, a straight diagonal line is easier to extrapolate in your mind than an arc). The Slider of course won't require a skill shadow - at least neither the Climber not the Floater have one, and they're the two ones for moving up and down in a straight line. Unless there is a specific case I currently can't think of, I don't think the Slider needs a skill shadow.
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

Offline namida

  • Administrator
  • Posts: 10992
    • View Profile
    • NeoLemmix Website
Quote
Unless there is a specific case I currently can't think of, I don't think the Slider needs a skill shadow.

Correct as far as I can tell, and keep in mind that the projection shadow feature could be used with the Slider just like it can with any other skill, too.

Fair point that a shadow might be necessary for the arc. I'll see about putting one in.

Offline namida

  • Administrator
  • Posts: 10992
    • View Profile
    • NeoLemmix Website
Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Spearer and Grenader (projectile constructive / destructive)
« Reply #12 on: November 03, 2020, 08:39:57 pm »
Arc shadow implemented. No shadow for the spear / grenade impact yet - that isn't as critical to evaluating the skill, so will likely only come if / when the skills are confirmed.

Offline WillLem

  • Posts: 1298
  • The Optimizer 8-)
    • View Profile
Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Spearer and Grenader (projectile constructive / destructive)
« Reply #13 on: November 04, 2020, 02:34:03 am »
And a video with much more progress, now: https://youtu.be/-yyyjzB86Kw

Haha! These are brilliant :thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup:

I particularly like the fact that the spear can end up in different positions depending on whereabout it is in its arc when it lands; that's a nice touch, and makes it an even more unique skill.

The grenade holes are massive, which is not necessarily a bad thing, but it may be preferable if it could be a bit more precise; this could be achieved either by choosing a different destructive projectile or by simply giving the grenades a smaller blast radius. Just a thought 8-)

Offline namida

  • Administrator
  • Posts: 10992
    • View Profile
    • NeoLemmix Website
Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Spearer and Grenader (projectile constructive / destructive)
« Reply #14 on: November 04, 2020, 04:45:10 am »
Put up a poll regarding trajectory, focusing on what seem to be the most interesting options. Of course, the "Other" option is there in case I'm reading it wrong.