Author Topic: [NeoLemmix] Ideas for challenges  (Read 184 times)

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Online WillLem

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[NeoLemmix] Ideas for challenges
« on: January 06, 2021, 10:29:30 AM »
Since this topic is proposing ideas for challenges, I wasn't sure whether it should go here or on the challenges board itself. Please do move it if necessary, mods.

Here are some new ideas for challenges! I'm not sure if some of these already exist (or variants thereof), if so then please do link me up to the existing challenge and I won't bother creating new topics for them.

That said, since NL has received so many updates recently, it's probably worth giving the ones that already exist a fresh start anyway, or at least a nicer-looking results table :lemcat:

Onwards! - all lemmings must face in the direction that they spawn in for the entire level. If a lemming turns at any point during the solution, it's a fail.

Onwards and Upwards! - same as the Onwards challenge, but lemmings cannot fall or descend at any point during the level.

Suicidal Tendencies - basically the Karoshi gimmick but as a challenge. Since NeoLemmix allows you to create replays of failed levels, the idea here is to save 0 lemmings; fewest skills/fastest time is also a factor here. Doing nothing at all also counts as a fail: time must not run out (or count up infinitely). No nuke button goes without saying.

The Construction Crew - use only constructive skills to complete the level; fewest/fastest is a factor.

The Destruction Crew - ditto, but for destructive skills only.

The Golden Skill - use only 1 skill type to complete the level (editing allowed); fewest repeats is a factor.

Just Keep Swimming - which levels can be solved making non-trivial/non-arbitrary use of the Swimmer skill? (editing allowed; any other skills can be used in combination with the Swimmer to make a workable solution).

Floaters vs. Gliders - I'm not sure exactly what this challenge would entail, I only have the title at this point! I'm thinking something to do with seeing which levels work best with Floaters, and vice versa...
« Last Edit: January 06, 2021, 04:47:38 PM by WillLem »

Offline Proxima

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Re: [NeoLemmix] Ideas for challenges
« Reply #1 on: January 06, 2021, 05:32:11 PM »
Onwards! - all lemmings must face in the direction that they spawn in for the entire level. If a lemming turns at any point during the solution, it's a fail.

Don't turn around! (not precisely the same as my version allows lemmings to turn once; this accommodates levels where the entrance is to the right of the exit).

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Onwards and Upwards! - same as the Onwards challenge, but lemmings cannot fall or descend at any point during the level.

A much more restrictive version of a pass/fail challenge that already had a lot of impossible levels, since it requires the exit to be above the entrance, which is actually quite rare. I can't see this getting off the ground.

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Suicidal Tendencies - basically the Karoshi gimmick but as a challenge. Since NeoLemmix allows you to create replays of failed levels, the idea here is to save 0 lemmings; fewest skills/fastest time is also a factor here. Doing nothing at all also counts as a fail: time must not run out (or count up infinitely). No nuke button goes without saying.

NL doesn't record time taken if no lemmings are saved, but "fewest skills to kill all lemmings" seems viable. Not sure how interesting it will be, though; I predict a lot of 0s and 1s. (There is at least one level in Redux where it's impossible to kill everyone, though. As a challenge, see if you can think of which one it is!)

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The Construction Crew - use only constructive skills to complete the level; fewest/fastest is a factor.

Undamaged Levels

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The Destruction Crew - ditto, but for destructive skills only.

Damage-only Levels (Note that unlike the above, this one never got off the ground, since there are so many levels with gaps to cross where construction is obviously required.)

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The Golden Skill - use only 1 skill type to complete the level (editing allowed); fewest repeats is a factor.

How many levels can be beaten with only one type of skill? for DOS Lemmings; for NL this doesn't have its own topic but is considered as part of Fewest different kinds of skills.

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Just Keep Swimming - which levels can be solved making non-trivial/non-arbitrary use of the Swimmer skill? (editing allowed; any other skills can be used in combination with the Swimmer to make a workable solution).

Too vague to be a workable challenge; this is more of a level design game.

Offline namida

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Re: [NeoLemmix] Ideas for challenges
« Reply #2 on: January 06, 2021, 05:49:40 PM »
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How many levels can be beaten with only one type of skill? for DOS Lemmings; for NL this doesn't have its own topic but is considered as part of Fewest different kinds of skills.

The difference here is that WillLem isn't applying a "within the original skillset" restriction - although I'll note that very few challenges that go outside the level's actual stats / skillset have been popular, the only exception that comes to mind being the "1 of each (traditional) skill" one.



The other thing I'd point out is that challenges tend to do best when they have a single goal. In other words - either one thing you're trying to minimize (eg: "fewest different kinds of skills?"), or one yes/no question (eg: "can you solve the level only assigning skills to one lemming?"), rather than a "first A, then B, then C..." type setup like some of yours have (especially the ones where, despite otherwise having nothing to do with time at all, you suggest further looking into fastest times), and in the yes/no case, with it simply being accepted that sometimes the answer is "no" rather than having various fallback rules to make a "yes" possible.

This isn't an absolute unquestionable thing, and common sense applies - for example there might be more than just "yes or no" for the question one; a good example here is the "assign to lemmings only facing one direction" challenge which has four possible outcomes for each level: "Can be done with either direction", "Can only be done with left-facing lemmings", same but "right-facing", or "cannot be done". But it still keeps the overall idea relatively simple, and doesn't introduce an entirely unrelated second goal. Another example would be the "fewest skill types" ones where we look for alternate combinations, not just a number - but again, still the same idea, just a matter of finding other ways to achieve it.

Online WillLem

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Re: [NeoLemmix] Ideas for challenges
« Reply #3 on: January 07, 2021, 12:03:13 AM »
Wow. An underwhelming response if ever there was one, but OK... :crylaugh:

this accommodates levels where the entrance is to the right of the exit

The version of the challenge I'm suggesting is different then, and more levels are likely to be impossible. Since the challenge is being done in NL, though, which allows entrances facing either way, it's feasible to flip the entrances for those levels if we allow that as a rule.

A much more restrictive version of a pass/fail challenge that already had a lot of impossible levels, since it requires the exit to be above the entrance, which is actually quite rare. I can't see this getting off the ground.

It's likely that only a handful of levels are possible, but I think it will be fun to find out which.

NL doesn't record time taken if no lemmings are saved, but "fewest skills to kill all lemmings" seems viable. Not sure how interesting it will be, though; I predict a lot of 0s and 1s.

Coupled with what namida was saying about simplifying the challenges, fewest skills seems the best way to go with this one then, forget fastest time.

How many levels can be beaten with only one type of skill? for DOS Lemmings; for NL this doesn't have its own topic but is considered as part of Fewest different kinds of skills

Fair enough, although my version allows editing the level where necessary (as namida pointed out).

(re:Just Keep Swimming)
Too vague to be a workable challenge; this is more of a level design game.

Fair enough, I might suggest this one as a level design contest at some point in the future then.

Regarding the challenges that already have topics: NeoLemmix has evolved massively since a lot of these challenges originally began, and both Redux and the "NL official" orig/ohno packs have yet to be finalised. I think it would be fun and worthwhile to generate an up-to-date list of results which specifically work in NeoLemmix.

I also think it's worth looking at allowing use of NeoLemmix's various capabilities in terms of editing levels, changing up skillsets, exploring the new skills, etc, to create new challenges that are unique to NeoLemmix, like namida is doing with the "Save-'em-Up" contest.

Having said that, since I do tend to suggest quite experimental and/or niche challenges, I would be happy to compile them all into a single topic simply called "WillLem's Challenges" or something, if your concern is that the challenges board will be overrun with wierd and wonderful ideas that nobody shows any interest in but me and maybe a couple of other people. The Builders & Bashers Only challenge didn't really take off like I'd hoped, although one or two people have joined in and shared results, so there clearly is an audience.



In response to namida's comments; I realise that I do need to define the rules for challenges more clearly and simplify them as much as possible rather than try to combine elements, so I'll aim for simplicity in future. Also, it's fine for a challenge to only have a small handful of levels that are possible within the defined parameters - I'm OK with levels being a "No" for a challenge; Builders & Bashers has lots of impossible levels, for example. The interesting part is discovering which levels are possible and which aren't, and documenting your findings for people to then improve on if they wish.