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Patrick

Changing Engines

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I've been working on a Duke mod for quite a bit of time (2 years ... when it's done!), and there are some things I'd like to change about it. I'd like to move it to a software-renderer only engine, and Eternity seems to be close to what I'm looking for, but there are some very specific features I want to make sure port over smoothly:

(1) One of the main reasons I'm moving to a software renderer is I'd like to use Paletted graphics instead of true color PNGs as I have been using so far. Does Eternity support translations for actors (for example, I'd like to make a green Alien and a Red one without having to make recolored sprites in a graphics editor)

(2)It's my understanding that Eternity supports EDF or some similar actor creation language. I have all new weapons and enemies in DECORATE. In particular, all the guns have Altfire modes. Can these custom actors be recreated faithfully in Eternity?

(3)Polyobjects. I use a LOT of polyobjects to create some cool environmental effects. Does Eternity support polyobjects?

(4) Another reason for changing is that creating brightmaps for every single frame of every sprite is killing me. I'd like to use a Palette modification to achieve this so I can stop making Brightmaps. Does Eternity have a problem with this?

(5)ACS scripts do a lot of stuff in my maps. Does eternity support ACS or something similar?

(6) The Reason why Eternity is so attractive to me is because I'm making extensive use of GZDoom's 3D floors. I'd like tp use Normal ZDoom, but the linked sector support isnt quite good enoguh to create some of the architecture I have.

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PolyObjects are supported and are not as limited as ZDoom's.

Eternity does not have any problems with colormap and palette modifications.

I can't help you with other things, because I am not that familiar with them yet, but I am pretty sure that EDF does not support some of the things you want to achieve yet.

As far as I know, ACS will eventually be implemented, because of planned HeXen support.

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Patrick said:

(1) One of the main reasons I'm moving to a software renderer is I'd like to use Paletted graphics instead of true color PNGs as I have been using so far. Does Eternity support translations for actors (for example, I'd like to make a green Alien and a Red one without having to make recolored sprites in a graphics editor)

You do know that ZDoom and GZDoom do work flawlessly with paletted graphics, don't you? All games use them.

As for translations, ZDoom supports certain types of translations that I don't think any other engine can; such as blendings and desaturation.

Patrick said:

(2)It's my understanding that Eternity supports EDF or some similar actor creation language. I have all new weapons and enemies in DECORATE. In particular, all the guns have Altfire modes. Can these custom actors be recreated faithfully in Eternity?

EDF is powerful and can do most of what DECORATE can. I say most, because DECORATE has a longer history of getting new features added to it so it's still more rich. However, you can always find work-arounds. What Eternity does not have at all, however, is an alt-fire mode.

Patrick said:

(4) Another reason for changing is that creating brightmaps for every single frame of every sprite is killing me. I'd like to use a Palette modification to achieve this so I can stop making Brightmaps.

You are aware that you can use palette hack for that in ZDoom and GZDoom as well, don't you? Strife and Harmony use this.

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Neat!

Eternity supports translations, though currently only lump-based translations (some sort of raw image containing the original colors and what they should be translated to; I'm not entirely sure how they're set up TBH but it's probably not too difficult to load up one of its translation lumps in Photoshop and figure it out).

EDF allows for actor definitions, yes. Currently its weapons/inventory system is still incomplete, though, ( :( ) so weapons can only be modified/replaced, not actually added, but there are a number of generalized codepointers for weapons like ZDoom has. So, you're currently limited to the original number of weapons, but you have quite a bit of control to make their behavior new. There's not currently alt-fire support, to my knowledge; ask Quasar if he could add it for you maybe.

Eternity's polyobjects are magical and make all your dreams come true. There's code that actually regenerates all the segs in their path whenever they move, rather than depending on the nodebuilder to try avoiding seg splits nearby them, so they're all but guaranteed to behave 100% perfectly in all "correct" situations and are highly likely to behave just as well even in a lot of possible "wrong" setups, too. (You want your polyobjects to pass through a complex lighting gradient? You can do that :D )

Any sort of palette modification is fine, yeah. Eternity uses the palette and colormap blends provided in your wad directly, rather than emulating them, so pretty much anything you want to do with your palette or colormap is fair game.

As far as scripting goes, EE is currently kind of in limbo unfortunately. There's the Small scripting language, but due to major forwards-compatibility issues that were unforeseen when it was chosen and implemented, it's now considered deprecated. The beginnings of support for vanilla Hexen ACS are there, but I honestly don't know the slightest thing about how complete or usable it currently is. There's also a JavaScript-based language in planning/early development stages, called Aeon, but I wouldn't hold my breath for it. Personally I mostly just use voodoo dolls and sometimes EDF actors for scripty stuff, which is far from ideal, but can get the job done in most cases for my needs at least. This is definitely a problem/downfall at the moment, though.

Hope this helps!

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This sounds incredibly stupid.

Regarding your points:

1) What does this have to do with anything? To use paletted graphics you don't need to switch engines. Each Doom engine can do it, not just the software renderers.

2) Most of it can but you have to redo most of it from scratch because the definition formats are too different. Furthermore, Eternity still can't do custom weapons if I am not mistaken.

4) That should be the least reason to switch. GZDoom fully supports colormaps with fullbright entries. See Strife and Harmony for example.

5) Eternity is eventually going to support ACS but Quasar clearly stated that it's only going to be the Hexen feature set so lots of advanced stuff won't work without significant changes.

6) You are aware that 3D floors and portals are not the same thing, aren't you? In other words, good luck redesigning all your maps.

To summarize, it's going to take a lot of time and it's doubtful that your project will be any better for it.

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Cool. I wasnt aware that the Palette Hack works in GZDoom. Part of the reason is also that there need to be some more mods for Eternity, Damnit. This still doesnt change the problem with moving to ZDoom, because I need my 3D floors.

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Graf Zahl said:

This sounds incredibly stupid.

...

To summarize, it's going to take a lot of time and it's doubtful that your project will be any better for it.


It sounds to me like you're getting bent of shape because someone is abandoning your port for greener pastures.

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Avoiding the Graf Effect is a positive Eternity bonus! I'm glad you didn't lose your Duke project when your computer got molested. You've sure been keeping it under wraps...

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Graf Zahl said:

This sounds incredibly stupid.


What is? Trying to discourage people who want to switch from your port?

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John Smith said:

It sounds to me like you're getting bent of shape because someone is abandoning your port for greener pastures.



Actually, I think the work needed to convert between 2 basically incompatible engines seems like a lot of wasted work. Duke Nukem Forever is a perfect example where this can lead.

The only reason when this might be justified would be if the new engine had to offer something truly of advantage to the mod.

And sorry to all you Eternity fanboys - I can't see that here!

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John Smith said:

It sounds to me like you're getting bent of shape because someone is abandoning your port for greener pastures.


And none of his points are valid. It's terrible, really.

1. Paletted graphics are only possible in Eternity. GZDoom doesn't work with paletted graphics; for example you cannot play any of the paletted games such as Doom, Heretic, Hexen, Strife, Harmony or Chex Quest...

2. Eternity does support custom weapons with alt-fires, and turning DECORATE code into EDF is a fun and easy task.

4. Eternity is the only port in the entire world that uses colormap hack, since again GZDoom doesn't know what a palette is (see point 1).

5. All the ACS in Patrick's map can be kept as-is, no problems!

6. Yeah, linked sectors, 3D floors and portals are just different names for the same thing. Plus, there are plenty of utilities that can take a Hexen or UDMF map and spit out a Doom-format map for use in Eternity, so stay assured that none of your work so far would be wasted.


Sarcasm aside, there is one thing on his list that he would benefit from if he switches to Eternity: polyobjects. They're a lot better in EE than in ZDoom or the original Hexen.

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Graf Zahl said:

5) Eternity is eventually going to support ACS but Quasar clearly stated that it's only going to be the Hexen feature set so lots of advanced stuff won't work without significant changes.

Actually to offer a correction here, I have always stated that Hexen support in ACS is first priority. Only when that is at 100% would I consider implementing ZDoom extensions to it :)

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Gez said:

6. Yeah, linked sectors, 3D floors and portals are just different names for the same thing. Plus, there are plenty of utilities that can take a Hexen or UDMF map and spit out a Doom-format map for use in Eternity, so stay assured that none of your work so far would be wasted.



No they aren't! 3D floors are solid structures within sectors, portals are surfaces which render other parts of maps! You're completely wrong here. I have to agree with graf, I don't see how you can take a project that uses 3D floors heavily and convert it to EE without a shit-ton of work.

Not that I would ever discourage anyone from using EE, I'm just saying, 3D floors are not the same as portals.

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That'd be a huge waste of work because you'd basically have to do it twice unless you wanted to integrate the entire added features into Hexen's original interpreter which is also not an easy task. ZDoom's interpreter is a completely separate development (done at a time when Hexen's source hadn't been released yet) so its internal structure is completely different. You might be better off using ZDoom's version directly but commenting out all the things you don't want to implement right away.

Gez said:

Sarcasm aside, there is one thing on his list that he would benefit from if he switches to Eternity: polyobjects. They're a lot better in EE than in ZDoom or the original Hexen.



... which is something I'd happily change if I had the time for it. It's yet another one of those features where I have a good idea how to integrate it into ZDoom but it always gets pushed back when I find some free time to work on Doom in favor of other more important stuff (After all, polyobjects are working well if you know how to use them properly... ;) )

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SoM said:

No they aren't! 3D floors are solid structures within sectors, portals are surfaces which render other parts of maps! You're completely wrong here. I have to agree with graf, I don't see how you can take a project that uses 3D floors heavily and convert it to EE without a shit-ton of work.

Not that I would ever discourage anyone from using EE, I'm just saying, 3D floors are not the same as portals.


Yup, Doomworld posters sure are really good at detecting sarcasm.

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SoM said:

No they aren't!


I actually know.

I guess you just scanned over for "portal" and didn't pay attention to the rest of the post, including the "sarcasm aside" in the following paragraph.

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Gez said:

I actually know.

I guess you just scanned over for "portal" and didn't pay attention to the rest of the post, including the "sarcasm aside" in the following paragraph.



1. Sarcasm doesn't work in text
2. Sarcasm doesn't work in text
and finally
C. Sarcasm doesn't work in text

kthx

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Graf Zahl said:

... which is something I'd happily change if I had the time for it. It's yet another one of those features where I have a good idea how to integrate it into ZDoom but it always gets pushed back when I find some free time to work on Doom in favor of other more important stuff (After all, polyobjects are working well if you know how to use them properly... ;) )


...And this shows why there's seldom a really good reason to mod for Eternity. Graf Zahl has a gift for hoovering up all of its features.

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The 2 most compelling reasons I have for wanting to switch to Eternity are to play more with portals because I find them easier to work with than 3D floors, and I'm getting tired of trying to chug out Brightmaps for ~2000 sprites and textures. A palette hack would be good for this, but as things stand, everything's a PNG. Importing the Duke 3D resources into a paletted engine directly from Duke3d.grp is easier than Extract > Convert to PNG with transparency > Make brightmap for > add to WAD > add brightmap definition. And portals are easier to make because I'm currently at about ~150 Dummy sectors for things which are easier to do with portals. I've had much more luck playing with Eternity's portals than with ZDoom's. Also, people with older hardware won't be able to see all the time i"ve put into making all these Brightmaps.

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Creaphis said:

...And this shows why there's seldom a really good reason to mod for Eternity. Graf Zahl has a gift for hoovering up all of its features.

Hoovering is mutual: ;)

Find all "zdoom", Subfolders, Find Results 1, "Entire Solution"
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\acs_intr.h(144):// eventual support for ZDoomish features such as ACS libraries.
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\c_runcmd.h(44):// zdoom _inspired_:
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\c_net.c(35):// everything in here. zdoom has an elegant solution to this problem,
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\d_gi.h(42):// inspired by, but not taken from, zdoom
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\d_gi.h(271):// by zdoom, but I've taken it and really run with it.
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\d_dehtbl.c(1419):// zdoom-inspired pointers
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\d_dehtbl.c(1715):  // zdoom-inspired pointers
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\d_net.c(478):// as cvars or something similar, like in zdoom. This must be removed
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\d_net.c(857):// to re-simplify and eliminate possible bugs or redundancies. zdoom
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\e_player.h(49):   fixed_t lookspeed[2]; // haleyjd: look speeds (from zdoom)
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\e_ttypes.h(23)://   New dynamic TerrainTypes system. Inspired heavily by zdoom, but
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\e_ttypes.c(23)://   New dynamic TerrainTypes system. Inspired heavily by zdoom, but
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\g_game.c(1280):// it checks for another reallocation. zdoom changes this, so I know
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\m_misc.c(838):                "1 to make menu toggle action back up one level (like zdoom)"),
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\info.h(356):   int translucency;  // haleyjd 09/01/02: zdoom-style translucency
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\mn_engin.c(62):// through menus instead of exiting directly, to emulate ports like zdoom.
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\mn_engin.c(1059):         if(menu_toggleisback) // haleyjd 02/12/06: allow zdoom-style navigation
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_mobj.h(467):   int translucency;  // zdoom-style translucency level
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\polyobj.h(42):// haleyjd: use zdoom-compatible doomednums
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_enemy.c(1351):      // EDF_FIXME: needs to be generalized like in zdoom
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_henemy.c(3226):// ZDoom codepointer #1, implemented from scratch using wiki
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_henemy.c(3315):// ZDoom codepointer #2, implemented from scratch using wiki
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_henemy.c(3359):// ZDoom codepointer #3, implemented from scratch using wiki
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_henemy.c(3371):// ZDoom codepointer #4. Needed for Heretic support also.
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_henemy.c(3955):// ZDoom-compatible ammo jump. For weapons only!
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_map.c(768):      tm->BlockingMobj = NULL; // haleyjd: from zdoom
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_map3d.c(5):// ZDoom source distribution license, which is included in the 
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_map3d.c(17):// Largely from zdoom, this system seems to be more reliable than our old one.
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_map3d.c(129):// Derived from zdoom; iterator function for P_TestMobjZ
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_map3d.c(158):// From zdoom; tests a thing's z position for validity.
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_map3d.c(218):// a search, which is an extension borrowed from zdoom and is needed for 3D 
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_map3d.c(255):   fixed_t topz;      // haleyjd: from zdoom
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_map3d.c(292):   // haleyjd: from zdoom: OVER_UNDER
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_map3d.c(487):   // haleyjd: from zdoom:
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_map3d.c(542):   // haleyjd 06/28/06: skullfly check from zdoom
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_map3d.c(570):         // haleyjd: from zdoom:
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_map3d.c(706):// From zdoom: what our system was mostly lacking.
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_map3d.c(736):// haleyjd: From zdoom. I was about to implement this exact type of iterative
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_map3d.c(737):// check for each sector movement type when I noticed this is how zdoom does it
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_map3d.c(793):// MobjCollection (this is partially explained above). From zdoom.
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_map3d.c(869):// As in zdoom, the inner core of PIT_ChangeSector isolated for effects that
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_map3d.c(877):   // TODO: support DONTGIB flag like zdoom?
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_map3d.c(958):// above it didn't fit. From zdoom.
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_map3d.c(1048):// haleyjd: From zdoom. It is critical for 3D object clipping for the various
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_mobj.c(1300):   // haleyjd: zdoom-style translucency level
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_mobj.c(1306):      // zdoom and BOOM style translucencies are mutually
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_mobj.c(1307):      // exclusive, so unset the BOOM flag if the zdoom level is not
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_mobj.c(2299):// Adapted from zdoom source, see the zdoom license.
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_partcl.c(5):// zdoom source distribution license, which is included in the 
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_partcl.c(16)://   from zdoom. Thanks to Randy Heit.
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_partcl.c(742):// more to replace the god-awful Quake 2-wannabe splash from zdoom.
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_pspr.c(28):// for why and how it needs to be changed. zdoom uses separate events
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_xenemy.c(24):// Hexen- and ZDoom-inspired action functions
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_xenemy.c(157):// ZDoom-inspired action function, implemented using wiki docs.
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_xenemy.c(174):// ZDoom-inspired action function, implemented using wiki docs.
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_xenemy.c(248):// ZDoom-inspired action function, implemented using wiki docs.
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\p_xenemy.c(305):// Equivalent to ZDoom A_Explode extensions.
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\r_defs.h(568):  int translucency; // haleyjd: zdoom-style translucency
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\r_draw.h(143):   fixed_t translevel; // haleyjd: zdoom style trans level
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\r_data.c(649):// offset into each texture (according to ZDoom, due to some crappy tools,
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\r_data.c(653):// or the other - this may differ from ZDoom (or I misread their code).
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\r_draw.c(497):// haleyjd 09/01/02: zdoom-style translucency
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\r_draw.c(606):// haleyjd 11/05/02: zdoom-style translucency w/translation, for
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\r_drawl.c(444):// haleyjd 09/01/02: zdoom-style translucency
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\r_drawl.c(563):// haleyjd 11/05/02: zdoom-style translucency w/translation, for
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\r_drawq.c(1241):// haleyjd 09/01/02: zdoom-style translucency
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\r_drawq.c(1315):// haleyjd 11/05/02: zdoom-style translucency w/translation, for
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\r_main.c(421):   // SoM: Thanks to 'Randi' of Zdoom fame!
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\r_things.c(26)://  Particle code largely from zdoom, thanks to Randy Heit.
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\r_things.c(496):      // haleyjd: zdoom-style translucency
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\r_things.c(613):   //         09/01/02: zdoom-style translucency
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\r_things.c(961):   vis->translucency = FRACUNIT; // haleyjd: default zdoom trans.
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\sdl\i_net.c(30):// are supported. Both zdoom and Quake 2 have sockets code that could
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\v_patch.c(145):// Draws a translucent patch column. The DosDoom/zdoom-style
  D:\Doom\Source\Eternity\source\v_video.c(610):// Adapted from zdoom -- thanks to Randy Heit.
  Matching lines: 75    Matching files: 34    Total files searched: 361
Rest assured though that Eternity has some features that are never going into (G)ZDoom. Demo compatibility, for example.

Patrick said:

Well, the idea of using Eternity seemed attractive to me because there's not a whole lot out there currently for this, and large chunks of it is mainly that I HATE MAKING A BAZILLION BRIGHTMAPS.


But you don't have to.

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Quite simply, without EDF weapon support there's really no good reason at all for me to move to Eternity aside from my portal issues. Ultimately I'm simply trying to find a way to make my workflow more efficient. I want to make a polished finished product, but at the rate at which I'm progressing, things wont be done for quite a while.

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Gez: About two thirds or more of those lines are in reference to the same couple of key features: the particle system, terrain types, 3D object clipping, mlook, and the flexible translucency table. Of those, the 3D object clipping, mlook, and terrain code were actually taken to replace previous independent implementations from SMMU and Eternity which were broken in ways I felt were intractible. So as far as those go, those were *not* features taken from ZDoom in fact.

The majority of the remainder are the result of direct user requests for support of particular features such as various DECORATE codepointers. I can't help trying to please the fanbase, yarr? ;)

A few are actually only comments about things I've seen in ZDoom's code, such as notes about how what SMMU was doing in the netcode was total nonsense as compared to ZDoom's implementation, or how ZDoom's console system is unified with its configuration system in a way ours is not. These comments are not to be taken as a suggestion that I am about to replace any of those segments with actual ZDoom code :P

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Gez said:

But you don't have to.

What would you suggest he do then? Just do without?

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Quasar said:

These comments are not to be taken as a suggestion that I am about to replace any of those segments with actual ZDoom code :P

I'm not saying that. Just poking fun at the "OMG they're stealing that other port's features oh noes!" mentality that creeps up from time to time. :)

As far as I'm concerned, I have no problem with ports taking code or simply ideas from each other. In my naive mind, I thought this was precisely the point of free software.

rf` said:

What would you suggest he do then? Just do without?

Yeah. He wanted to palettize his graphics to use a palette hack. It'll work just as well. Do we need to cite Strife and Harmony once again?

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rf` said:

What would you suggest he do then? Just do without?


No, he can use the colormap "brightmap" hack in Eternity, ZDoom AND GZDoom, and in vanilla doom. It's not a port specific feature.

Anyway, the point is, Eternity has good features and benefits, and it's only going to get better, but converting a mod with ZDoom and GZDoom specific features to Eternity would be similar to the Duke Nukem Forever scenario, a lot of work would be needed, and in this case, some features might be lost.

For an Eternity project, do what Vaporware is doing, make a bunch of awesome Eternity stuff from the beginning, and don't hope that Eternity can do everything ZDoom can do yet.

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I have to agree. If you've already got a lot of work done for one port, converting it over to another port with a different feature set is most likely going to be a pain.

It's like when some people asked me why I was remaking KDiZD for vanilla Doom and not for Eternity or something: when porting a project from one advanced engine to another, you end up inevitably just running into all the things port A can do that port B doesn't, without getting to really take advantage of the cool things that port B does that the project wasn't made for. :P

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Again, I didn't realize that the palette hack actually worked in GZDoom, so honestly my only gripe is just portals.

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Patrick said:

my only gripe is just portals.

Yeah, that's the other domain where Eternity is far ahead of ZDoom.

However, trying to understand your spaceplane pic, it seems to me you simply defined it incorrectly, as if it were a 3D floor, so the portal is only above the ship instead of above the entire area.

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Gez said:

Yeah, that's the other domain where Eternity is far ahead of ZDoom.

However, trying to understand your spaceplane pic, it seems to me you simply defined it incorrectly, as if it were a 3D floor, so the portal is only above the ship instead of above the entire area.


Gnah, that's not it. That's the first thing I checked. I dont suppose it makes any difference that I'm using the portal things instead of the fancy new linedefs?

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