Jump to content
Search In
  • More options...
Find results that contain...
Find results in...
Frader

Hell Commander - Doom based RTS (new video!)

Recommended Posts

Let me start by introducing myself. I'm 22 and I'm finishing a Computer Science Engineering Degree at university. For my final degree project I decided to make a study of the technological needs of current computer games. So why am I posting here? Well, as part of that project I'm making Hell Commander, which is a real-time strategy game based on the Doom universe.

At this moment the game is not playable yet. However, I've uploaded a little video on youtube so you can make an idea of how it looks like. Here's the link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vMyuX6KZcVg

Now, to what really interests me. I'm having to take a few decisions related to the gameplay that i thought you guys could help me with.

To start with, I need to figure out some kind of currency that players will need to gather in order to make units. I've thought of controlling some kind of power plants, so energy would be the currency. Then you would need X amount of energy to summon a demon from hell. Another possibility would be to make the player collect souls somehow. Maybe from some kind of soul wells, or maybe looking for them across the map. Any ideas and thoughts on this would be great.

Oh, and a few things that are already on my TO-DO list:
- Units will throw fireballs similarly as they would in a FPS. They will have some accuracy, and they won't change direction once they're shoot. What that means is that they may not end up hitting their target, but maybe the one next to it. Or that the unit may evade the fireball just by moving.
- A "fog of war" will be added that won't let units see thtough walls.
- Units will be build by summoning them similarly as it happened on that Doom's final boss.

That's it for now. Any ideas or comments you may have will be greatly appreciated. As you can see I'm still on quite an early development phase, so if you have some good suggestion it may very well end up being implemented. Don't ask for very complex functionalities thought :P

Thanks!

Share this post


Link to post

This certainly looks interesting!
The models look a little awkward IMHO, but I guess you have to get along with what you can gather from other sources... or are those self-made?

As for the resources you plan to add to let one build units, it would be helpful to know if you only get to play for the demons or the marines as well.
If you plan to add both, your idea already sounds good to me... the humans could spend energy on getting new units, while the demons have to collect souls by killing enemys or some other way cou can think of.

Share this post


Link to post

oh man!! I've thought of something in this style a long time ago and I believe I have some answers to you're undecided things! (sorry to be sounding like an omgfanboy)

If I were to create Doom in the form of an RTS, this is how I would do it:

Every player starts with an "Icon of Sin" planted somewhere randomly in the map. To start with, the Icon of Sin can only spawn lost souls. These lost souls are dopey, deal little damage, often subject themselves to danger, but they don't cost any 'money' (for lack of a better word). Obviously, when the player obtains more and more 'money', the icon of sin can be used to generate imps, and demons which cost a little bit of money.

Higher tiers of monsters can only be obtained through levelling up, in addition to needing more money. (I suppose levelling up can be reached by killing a certain amount of opposing forces.)

In order to obtain 'money', the resources of money would be random UAC Bases littered throughout the map. The player must use their lost souls to attack, damage, and infiltrate the UAC structures. (Idk if you've ever played Starcraft, but this would be done similarly to how the zerg infest a terran command center) Using stronger monsters you spawn with your Icon of Sin, you can damage the UAC bases faster which makes them easier to possess, though you need your lost souls to actually 'possess' it.

Usually these UAC structures will have scientists and marines wandering around to defend it (though very poorly, as demonstrated though all the dead bodies in Ultimate Doom E1.) These marines can either be killed or possessed with lost souls to be turned into zombies which can be used to ease infiltrating UAC bases and attacking enemy forces. The more zombies and UAC structures you possesss, the more money is generated in your bank.

Higher tier UAC structures generate more 'money' at a faster rate though are usually guarded more heavily. For example, a hangar or a containment area will usually have few personell guarding it and will give you less money, but infiltrating something like a computer station or an anomaly will provide a lot more money. (I think it would be cool if possessing anomalies will also allow other benefits such as turning demons into spectres etc.)

I don't know what the initial purpose of the game would be. It seems too difficult to create a storyline campaign out of this, and since the UAC is used as a valuable resource instead of a realistic enemy, I suppose the only other enemy would have to be a range of other Icons of sin competing for the same purpose. I guess the goal would have to be to destroy all opposing Icons of sin.

I'm not saying you should do whatever I say, but the way I see it, if Doom WERE an RTS, this way seems to make the most sense to me. My biggest gripe that I have still left undecided is the choice of optional races. You would get to be an Icon of Sin spawning doom monsters, and ONLY doom monsters, which limits variety, unlike most popular RTS games like Command and Conquer, Age of Empires, Warcraft etc.

Share this post


Link to post

Here's an idea. Both players start out with a Cacodemon. Then both Cacodemons turn in to owls and fly away.

On a serious note, this game idea sounds great. Currency? I don't think there's much resources in hell, so I would definitely go with the soul idea.
The guy above me had a nice idea too. Make sure there's a nice storyline to it!

Share this post


Link to post

This Idea is a really good one. And some of 40oz' ideas are pretty neat too.

Just a few additional thoughts that occurred to me while watching this.

-For a second race, you could have marines. Ok, this does not leave you with a lot of variety. But if you consider that you could spawn only basic marines with pistols to begin. shotgun marines would cost a little more. As you tier up, you could get marines with the Super shotty and chaingun. Marines equipped with RL's and Plasma guns would be far more expensive, and marines with the BFG, perhaps they could be like super units, limited to only 2 or something like that. This would give you at least a few different gameplay options too. Marines vs marines; marines vs demons or demons vs demons.
-To work in with 40oz ideas above, the storyline could be as simple as the humans trying to recapture their own structures from the demons, which would generate money for them in return, the same as the demonic armies. And as it would take time for the demons to 'infest/possess' a UAC structure, it would obviously take the marines a similar amount of time to 'repair' the same structure.
-Also, you could spend 'money' to give your marines upgrades, such as combat armor, megarmor, soul spheres, medikits etc etc. This could be done for both races; ie you could buy demonic megarmor for your demons as well.
-Exploding barrels spawning randomly across the map maybe? I like that idea.
-Invulnerability and invisibility powerups to give you a tactical edge over you opponent.

Good luck with it. Looks promising. :)

Share this post


Link to post

Wow. Definitely keep us posted about development of this!

I like the idea of "souls" as currency. Much like there are fields of Tiberium in C&C or fields of minerals in Starcraft, you could have fields of corpses (poor civilians caught in the invasion) as something players have to "mine" for souls. If that's a bit too morbid then something implying past human life like a graveyard might be more appropriate.

Visually what you've made looks rad. I've always disliked those amateur 3D models which people load into GL sourceports but from this perspective they actually look pretty cool. I'm not much a fan of the high-res textures though maybe it's better to use the JDTP than rip the originals, Zenimax (id's new owners) don't seem to be as forgiving of use of id Software's IP as id Software were.

Kyka's ideas of barrel hazards and Doom-like powerups is cool, definitely take those into consideration if you can.

If you're looking for help with converting the gameplay system to a larger scale and/or balancing things out, you can download the rules for the Doom Boardgame free from the creator's website. It's quite balanced (especially with the Difficulty Levels expansion) and fun to play. The Expansion adds Deathmatch and CTF.

Share this post


Link to post

Infighting would be an interesting challenge, forcing the "masterminds" to be careful in unit positioning. Using mixed groups of units would be more dangerous than homogeneous groups.

Share this post


Link to post

In addition to the anomalies allowing you to turn Demon's into spectres, capturing things like Military Bases can allow you to spawn the more cybernetic monsters like Mancubuses, Revenants, and Arachnatrons

For added fun, If doom's range of monsters seems too limited, you could consider using some of PSX Doom or Doom64's additional monsters, such as the Nightmare imp (invisible throws faster fireballs), the Nightmare Demon (Double health, belches fireballs AND bites), Nightmare cacodemon (flies dangerously fast) and the Doom64 Pain Elemental, which has two mouths for double the lost soul spewage. Also Doom RPG had a lot of new monsters that had varying health and dealt different damage that were no more than simple recolors, so you'd only need to change the skin, not the models. Here's the DoomRPG reference

Also I second the idea of including barrels.

Infighting sounds pretty cool too, organizing your forces so that you only send in one particular race of monsters into battle at a time to get the most out of your forces, and mixing up your races would most likely cause trouble.

Share this post


Link to post

Speaking of God-forsaken UAC bases, what about some of them that consist of offensive strike forces; you have to watch out for computer-controlled UAC military storming your imps? Or even experienced players trying to see how much they survive as humans?

Add alternate races, such as Hexen hordes? Ettins, centaurs, priests, dragons look good as war units.

Share this post


Link to post

This reminds me of Doom: The Battle for Mars back when it was in production. Lookin good! Awaiting updates for this.

Share this post


Link to post

Thanks for your ideas guys. There are many that look pretty good to me.

There was something I forgot to mention and it's that I'm trying to make it a multiplayer game. Giving the possibility of playing against a machine would require a lot of AI work, which is really complex stuff. Just think on how many commercial RTS have AI controlled players that are too easy to beat.

Anyway, 40oz's ideas look pretty much in the line of what I was thinking. I could place some power plants distributed across the map with some marines defending them. Those marines would work similarly to how creeps work on Warcraft 3. But instead of having to level up, maybe we could let a player make some types of units depending on the type of power plants and UAC facilities they control (and maybe even take into account the time u've controlled them for the strongest units). Unlike warcraft3 it would probably be better to resapawn the dead marines once in a while if you don't control their power plant.

I had also considered the idea of making two "races" (demons and marines). But at the end, two things made me decide to focus on making just the demons at least for now. The first one is that there's a lot of work involved in balancing two different races. And the second one is that the marines models I've got all look pretty much the same. So why not imagine there are many demon factions competing to control humanity? They're demons after all, and should be greedy :P

I also liked the idea of the exploding barrels, it would add some fun to the game. I was also thinking on introducing the idea of locked doors and keys on the game somehow, as it was very used on the original games. I'm still not sure on how a player would obtain a key though. All this stuff falls on the category of things that would make the game more entertaining to play, but I'll have to focus on making it playable first ;)

For those who asked about the 3d models, I'm taking them from old md2s i found on the net. Don't ask me exactly who made them, because I ended up downloading many monster packs and i kinda have a mess now. However, the simple level you see on the video is self-made. If anyone feels capable of making something nicer and is interested in doing so you can always let me know and we'll consider it. Levels can be done directly with almost any 3D modeler out there. I'm using Softimage XSI myself, but I'm pretty sure Blender and Maya would do the job too.

Share this post


Link to post

I like Gez's idea of working in infighting. Normally in RTS games you'd just have friendly fire, but in Doom, your monsters would actually retaliate against whoever hit them. It would require a bit more strategy to build a squad that way. Your demons might need long-range/anti-aerial support from imps, but you need to position the imps in such a way that they won't accidentally hit the demons. The same thing could happen when attacking enemies: you might tell them to gang up on one enemy, but they'll go after whoever hits them first. You could select the monsters after they were hit and redirect them to the correct target(s), but that would take time that could be used doing other things, and would require you to stay focused on the battles.

To counter the annoying aspects, you could probably work in some sort of "control" that would prevent/limit infighting/retargeting. Given what you've said about the game so far, maybe it could be based on the number of structures held vs. the number of monsters in your army. Your monsters would be more inclined to ignore your orders and attack whoever attacked them when you don't have enough control over them. I think that would be more interesting than a population cap.

Share this post


Link to post

What you are basically asking for is to allow friendly fire to happen. I've already been thinking about it because it would trully diferentiate the game from other RTSs. But I feel that it would be too complex for a player to position his units correctly. Notice that most monsters have ranged attacks.

The only way i can see this working is by making units a bit more "intelligent" in the sense that they could try to look for a spot in which they can shoot the enemy without hitting an ally. Then what players will need to worry about is the composition of their groups. So for example, large groups of imps wouldn't work well as the ones at the back wouldn't be able to fire. On the other side, a cyberdemon may be tall enough to throw missiles even if it has other smaller units in front of him.

All in all, it surely is a nice feature to consider. I'll take a look at it at it's time. I bet that at the end it's gonna make the AI algorithms on the units kinda harder. The more intelligent the units are, the more work for me. So we'll see :P

Share this post


Link to post

Sweet man. I'm not much of an RTS guy (at least not anymore) but this Doom-related one sounds like tons of fun.

Share this post


Link to post

Infighting in an RTS would be horrible, unless you want your game to be a micromanagement hell with little to no strategy at all involved.


A few years back I had an idea for a Doom RTS involving at least three races: Marines, with all the weaponry and some machines, Demons, who would include zombies, revenants, mancs, arachs, cybers and other mechanically engineered hellspawn and Devils, who'd have imps, demons, cacos, PEs, barons, AVs and other non-mechanical monsters. A fourth optional side would be a spiritual human side with little to no technology (being to marines what devils are to demons). It would obviously require some new units to be come up with, but I liked the idea of dividing the forces of Hell into two groups.

Share this post


Link to post
Mivalekan said:

imp rush kekekekekekeke ^______^


Heh. We actually had this in a RTS me and Jodwin tinkered with for a while. Then again, that particular RTS was all about rushes of some kind, so there.

Jodwin said:

Infighting in an RTS would be horrible, unless you want your game to be a micromanagement hell with little to no strategy at all involved.


Rather than actual infighting, many RTS have "friendly fire" or "collateral damage" to take into consideration when using certain units and abilities (e.g. catapults/ballistas/cannon fire and spells/dragon/griffon fire in Warcraft/Warcraft 2).

Share this post


Link to post
Maes said:

Rather than actual infighting, many RTS have "friendly fire" or "collateral damage" to take into consideration when using certain units and abilities (e.g. catapults/ballistas/cannon fire and spells/dragon/griffon fire in Warcraft/Warcraft 2).


While I think it would be pretty wild to be the first RTS where your units were ruthless enough to kill each other if you don't arrange them right, I think simply allowing for friendly fire seems the most fair.

For examp[le using a bunch of spectres with a cyberdemon tailing behind can be devastating.

Share this post


Link to post

Let's not forget that in Dune II the Ordos faction had those Deviator tanks that could cause your units to turn against you, which however was only mildly annoying as attacked units would switch sides again (however they could be badly crippled/destroyed in the process).

When used by you however, you could exploit a bug where you could still give one last order to an enemy unit where the effect had just worn off, and would carry it out to the bitter end (I usually sent them to attack their own base without retaliation. Turned Devastator tanks sent to bombard an enemy base at random were t3h pwn)

Share this post


Link to post

This looks promising! The last RTS I played was Warcraft III, and its heavy modding capabilities (we're talking total conversions, RPGs, TDs, roleplaying maps, etc.) helped maintain its appeal for several years.

It's been a while, but this looks like it could be quite fun. Additionally, perhaps you should consider making unit groups automatically go into formation (such as with Warcraft III and even Starcraft, I believe). In the case of all these imps, they would probably simply arrange themselves into a #x# square. They seem to do that when they reach their destination, but level geometry permitting, they should try to maintain the formation while moving, too.

However, it gets even neater when you mix melee and ranged units, usually in RTS games with formations you can expect the ranged units to evenly disperse themselves behind the melee, etc. Just a suggestion as movement seems a tad clumsy right now - if this is to be anything like Doom, I'm sure we're going to be seeing hordes of monsters and lots of carnage!

Share this post


Link to post

Many of you asked me to keep you updated, and I'm pleased to deliver. Please note that what I'm going to show and explain here is still in a development phase and is thus still subject to change.

Let me start explaining how the unit construction and currency system will work. Every player will start with an Icon of Sin placed in a different spot in the map, along with a few units (or some little cash in the form of energy to produce them). All units of that player will be summoned in the Icon of Sin. Also, the Icon of Sin won't be destructible by other players.

Players will play the role of an Evil Commander with the objective to possess all human infrastructures. They will win the game whenever they manage to control all UAC buildings. These buildings will be of different kinds and will be distributed across the map. They will also be defended by UAC forces that will fight against all players that try to possess them. These forces will be AI controlled.

Apart from being a mere objective to win the game, UAC buildings will provide advantatges to the ones controlling them. To start with, there will be power plants that will provide the energy needed to summon units. The rest of the buildings will be required in order to summon specific types of units. For example, a player may need to control a barracks in order to make shotgun soldiers. In the same fashion, a spaceport and a research lab may be required to summon cyberdemons.

To keep things balanced, some buildings will have stronger UAC forces defending them. Also, a minimum time controlling some types of buildings may be required to make the most powerful units (such as the cyberdemon). Finally, there won't be enough buildings in the map to allow all players to make all types of units. So once the UAC forces are defeated players will still need to fight each other for their control.

And now, what I hope you were waiting for: a new video! In this new demo you can see a few imps fighting. Notice how they move to get "line of sight" to their targets. Also, you can see how fireballs can be evaded just by moving exactly as it would happen on any FPS. Finally, the units' aim is not perfect so you'll see some fireballs missing their target from time to time.

As always, feedback will be much appreciated! :D

Share this post


Link to post

Needs attack-move for crazy korean micro.






Like SJ said though, awesome, looks pretty cool. Did you build the engine for this yourself or are you using some other rts' engine? Would be a great thing for your resume if you did make it yourself.

Share this post


Link to post

To answer ArmouredBlood question, I'm not building everything up from scratch. The game is made in C++, and I'm using a few libraries that are making my life much easier.

For example, I'm using Ogre3d (ogre3d.org) as the rendering engine. When it comes to networking, I'm using Zoidcom (zoidcom.com). These two are the most important ones, but the list goes on.

Even this said, the job that remains is anything but easy. There's still all the game logic that needs to be programmed. From finding the optimum path from one point in the map to another (aka pathfinding), to making things look smooth across a network with a variable latency.

All in all I'm pretty much working at the level at which most commercial games are made. Very few have a graphics engine made specially for them, for example. The philosophy is not to reinvent the wheel.

To sum it up, I'm not using any already made RTS engine. Instead I'm basically building my own from a set of freely available general purpose libraries.

Share this post


Link to post

Heh, piecing together an engine from not-always-congruent pieces is still an achievement, good work so far. The scale and general structure of the map you used in this demo reminds me of age of mythology for some reason, guess it comes from my rather pathetic attempts to make something for it 5+ years ago (back in high school, heh.).

Share this post


Link to post

You're an awesome new member! You're designing a solid Doom RTS, and you listen to MSI. If only Kagemaru_H knew how to be like you.

Share this post


Link to post
Jodwin said:

Infighting in an RTS would be horrible, unless you want your game to be a micromanagement hell with little to no strategy at all involved.


A few years back I had an idea for a Doom RTS involving at least three races: Marines, with all the weaponry and some machines, Demons, who would include zombies, revenants, mancs, arachs, cybers and other mechanically engineered hellspawn and Devils, who'd have imps, demons, cacos, PEs, barons, AVs and other non-mechanical monsters. A fourth optional side would be a spiritual human side with little to no technology (being to marines what devils are to demons). It would obviously require some new units to be come up with, but I liked the idea of dividing the forces of Hell into two groups.


Pretty much what I was going to say, as I was thinking of C&C3 Kanes Wrath, with all its subfactions, ie, the Scrin: Base focuses on slow moving forcefielded death from the air (dubbed the "Victory fleet"), the Reaper-17 subfaction throws away the victory fleet for ground assaults and tiberum infused units for more damage, and Traveler-59 throws away all forcefields to focus on speed upgrades and mind control units. In Hell's case, youd have the base stuff, likely most of the original cast, focusing on balance, with the Spider Mastermind as the leader/hero the cybernetic specialists, likely needing lots of new creations, slow heavy firepower focused (steamrollers) maybe having the Cyberdemon as the leader/hero, and the pure demons, maybe focusing on trickery and stealth, with spectres and nightmare spectres instead of demons, teleporting units, and the Archvile as the leader/hero

Marines would definitely be the other side, but to get much out of them, you'll have to make stuff up or borrow from Doom 3, and maybe the movie, to get more units. Maybe one faction could focus on Marine infantry, with various ranks with various weapons, with the higher ups having dual weaponry (Think of Halo Wars and its marines, they have machine guns and grenades, later on machine guns and rocket launchers, and finally, shotguns and rocket launchers). Maybe have a side based on the Mars base, with appropriate technology (Probably anything from Doom 3), so you wont find a tank or anything, an maybe an Earth based faction to represent Doom 2. Seems like mechs/walkers would be good to balance things like Barons. A BFG using supermech could be the Cyberdemon equivalent?

I love RTS games, and a Doom based one has been swimming in my head for a very long time, so I'm practically overflowing with ideas.

Share this post


Link to post

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×