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Iceykiller

Random questions about random things (relevant)

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Just a bunch of questions I have about inconvenient things I've run into.

1) How would you change the up / down height of a monster? Let's say I want to place three Cacodemons in a column, one on top of another.

2) How do you make it to where switches change their texture when you use them like in the original game? So if I press a red switch, I would like it to light up as a signal that it's been hit.

3) How do I make slopes? For ramps, slanted ceilings, and other such things?

4) Is it possible to add more tag effects? I find it irritating that there are only FIVE ceiling effects; I don't always want to use lowering floors for traps and secret passages, sometimes I'd like to switch it up with raising ceilings. But with so little options, it's not exactly convenient.

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I can answer at least two of them:

1.) If using DoomBuilder 2, go into 3D mode, select the monster, and use the mousewheel to elevate it.

3.) Using DoomBuilder 2 (I only know how to use this builder), you have to be making the map in Hexen/UDMF format. To make a slope, you'll have to make the sector that will be the ramp. Then select either end of the slope (linedef) and select its effect as Plane (Align to Floor) or whatever its called. Set it to align floor / ceiling to the front or back, whichever the ramp will be according to the direction of the linedef. I hope that makes sense as I suck at explaining technical things lol.

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The first one makes perfect sense.

Your answer to question number three makes some kind of sense. But I've never used another format / game engine / game configuration / whatever the hell it's called other than just vanilla Doom, so I don't completely know what you're talking about.

I guess I'll have to figure out how to use the Hexen format?

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Iceykiller said:

1) How would you change the up / down height of a monster? Let's say I want to place three Cacodemons in a column, one on top of another.

Hexen-format (and UDMF I suppose) have a "thing height" field for things. This is the height of the thing relative to the floor, but note that the thing must not be affected by gravity or it will plummet to the ground.

Iceykiller said:

2) How do you make it to where switches change their texture when you use them like in the original game? So if I press a red switch, I would like it to light up as a signal that it's been hit.

Since I assume you're talking about ZDoom, you'll need to define a switch using ANIMDEFS. An easy alternative is just reusing one of Doom/Doom II's existing switch textures.

Iceykiller said:

3) How do I make slopes? For ramps, slanted ceilings, and other such things?


The Plane_Align special is what is generally used. The difficult part about learning to use this is knowing what arguments to set for the line. First argument is to slope the floor, second for sloping the ceiling. A value of 1 in either will slope the sector in front of the line, and a value of 2 will slope the sector behind the line.

Iceykiller said:

4) Is it possible to add more tag effects? I find it irritating that there are only FIVE ceiling effects; I don't always want to use lowering floors for traps and secret passages, sometimes I'd like to switch it up with raising ceilings. But with so little options, it's not exactly convenient.


Okay, now I'm confused. What are you mapping for? If it's ZDoom, or some derivative port, use Hexen-format or UDMF. The effects you have at your disposal are nearly infinite. If you're working on a Boom-compatible port, use a Boom editing configuration, which is still very flexible. Otherwise, don't expect to have much variety in what linedef actions there are.

Edit: Well, damn. Too slow, I am.

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I'm just using straight up Doom2.wad right now for my game configurations. I don't have any tools or extra plugins or special advanced engines in place. I just loaded up DoomBuilder 2 with Doom2.wad and started goin'.

Sorry for forgetting to mention that :(

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Iceykiller said:

I'm just using straight up Doom2.wad right now for my game configurations. I don't have any tools or extra plugins or special advanced engines in place. I just loaded up DoomBuilder 2 with Doom2.wad and started goin'.


Okay, that makes it easy. :p

1. Can't.

2. Replace some patches (graphic lumps) that the default switch textures use.

3. Can't.

4. Can't.

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For raising ceilings, um... well, that's basically what a door is. Vanilla definitely is pretty limited as far as ceiling movers go, other than that, though.

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I'd rather not start a new thread, as I've done that enough already and feel like a spammer, so I'll just ask here and hope for an answer:

What do I need to switch to using ZDoom for map editing? I don't exactly know how to set all of that up. Do I just get a zdoom.wad and zdoom.exe kinda like Doom2?

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I only use DB1, but I believe it's the same for DB2. When you go to make a map, you just select a different configuration. To use ZDOOM specific features, you would use a ZDOOM config set. And yes, you would need to use the actual ZDOOM engine for a ZDOOM-capable map. I personally use GZDOOM since it supports 3D floors and dynamic lights, but for just slopes, ZDOOM is fine. Once you get used to the more advanced engines, vanilla might seem too limiting for you.

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Eponasoft said:

Once you get used to the more advanced engines, vanilla might seem too limiting for you.

I find that after working on advanced sourceport projects, vanilla becomes all the more refreshing and enjoyable to map for.

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Iceykiller said:

What do I need to switch to using ZDoom for map editing? I don't exactly know how to set all of that up. Do I just get a zdoom.wad and zdoom.exe kinda like Doom2?


You get ZDoom. You'll get a .exe and associated files. Not a .wad, though, the supplementary data is contained in a different format, but that's kinda anecdotal.

With DB2, you'll just have to use one of the existing ZDoom configs. There are three different map formats. For most advanced features, the Doom map format will not be enough. You will be able to define slopes, and you can even create new linedef effects if you want more ceiling specials. Creating new switches is independent of map format, too. But you won't be able to position the monsters or other objects in vertical space; unless you use complicated workarounds (such as creating a cacodemon column spawner using A_SpawnItemEx...).

Basically, if you stay with the Doom map format, you'll have to learn a lot of additional features, which usually require a good knowledge of the Doom engine's internal workings. So it'd be a lot simpler to switch to Hexen format or UDMF for what you're wanting to do.

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Gez said:

You get ZDoom. You'll get a .exe and associated files. Not a .wad, though, the supplementary data is contained in a different format, but that's kinda anecdotal.

With DB2, you'll just have to use one of the existing ZDoom configs. There are three different map formats. For most advanced features, the Doom map format will not be enough. You will be able to define slopes, and you can even create new linedef effects if you want more ceiling specials. Creating new switches is independent of map format, too. But you won't be able to position the monsters or other objects in vertical space; unless you use complicated workarounds (such as creating a cacodemon column spawner using A_SpawnItemEx...).

Basically, if you stay with the Doom map format, you'll have to learn a lot of additional features, which usually require a good knowledge of the Doom engine's internal workings. So it'd be a lot simpler to switch to Hexen format or UDMF for what you're wanting to do.


So basically, I want to be able to select the ZDoom (Doom in Hexen / UDMF Format) to get the most out of my mapping experience? I'm assuming I'll want to get the hexen.wad as well as ZDoom.exe to do that, correct?

I want to set myself up in the best way possible from the start so I can go forward at max speed and power.

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Whoa there... While ZDoom is cool and powerful, it might give too much freedom and ask for too much responsibility. Why not try something in the middle, such as Boom? This would solve problems 2) and 4) and you'll get lots of mapping flexibility without losing the Doom mapping grace. With ZDoom you risk going to another genre and not keeping up to it.

Stacked cacodemons cannot be made in Boom but you can fake it by placing them on pyramids or whatever, so they'll ambush you from different heights.

Slopes aren't necessary, there are no wheels in Doom.

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Iceykiller said:

I'm assuming I'll want to get the hexen.wad as well as ZDoom.exe to do that, correct?

Yes - if you're mapping for Hexen. No - if you're mapping for "Doom in Hexen" format.

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printz said:

Whoa there... While ZDoom is cool and powerful, it might give too much freedom and ask for too much responsibility. Why not try something in the middle, such as Boom? This would solve problems 2) and 4) and you'll get lots of mapping flexibility without losing the Doom mapping grace. With ZDoom you risk going to another genre and not keeping up to it.

Stacked cacodemons cannot be made in Boom but you can fake it by placing them on pyramids or whatever, so they'll ambush you from different heights.

Slopes aren't necessary, there are no wheels in Doom.


I always knew mapping was complicated, but not this much ;)

So you're saying I shouldn't head for ZDoom just yet, but later? And I shouldn't map using a Hexen format?

I'm not exactly sure what you mean by "going to another genre". I thought ZDoom was just an enhanced version of vanilla Doom or something?

GreyGhost said:

Yes - if you're mapping for Hexen. No - if you're mapping for "Doom in Hexen" format.


Oh... well, then how do I map with ZDoom (Doom in Hexen format)?

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Iceykiller said:

I'm not exactly sure what you mean by "going to another genre". I thought ZDoom was just an enhanced version of vanilla Doom or something?

Yeah but ZDoom is so powerful it's easy to get carried away.

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printz said:

Yeah but ZDoom is so powerful it's easy to get carried away.


I'm sorry that I keep pressing, but how do you mean "carried away"? Like, making a map too advanced or complex?

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It has so many extra features that you might not know where to start looking anymore.

I don't think it's that much harder than vanilla format, however as someone new to mapping, you tend to skip everything that doesn't sound familiar. This is exactly where the problems begin, because you don't know what 'unfamiliar' settings are essential knowledge and which aren't. Vanilla format is so simple that practically all settings are essential. So at least you know which terms you should learn about before starting.

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Zom-B said:

It has so many extra features that you might not know where to start looking anymore.

I don't think it's that much harder than vanilla format, however as someone new to mapping, you tend to skip everything that doesn't sound familiar. This is exactly where the problems begin, because you don't know what 'unfamiliar' settings are essential knowledge and which aren't. Vanilla format is so simple that practically all settings are essential. So at least you know which terms you should learn about before starting.


Agh... so, when should I actually start picking up ZDoom? I feel like I've got all of the basic Vanilla Doom stuff down. I understand everything in all of the selection menus so far. I'm I'm waiting for full understanding before picking up a more advanced game engine, I'm definitely ready. If it's something else, I have no idea if I'm ready, lol.

Should I maybe create a first map before switching for a new engine? :P

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Iceykiller said:

Agh... so, when should I actually start picking up ZDoom? I feel like I've got all of the basic Vanilla Doom stuff down. I understand everything in all of the selection menus so far. I'm I'm waiting for full understanding before picking up a more advanced game engine, I'm definitely ready. If it's something else, I have no idea if I'm ready, lol.

Should I maybe create a first map before switching for a new engine? :P

You can move over to a more advanced mapping format whenever you feel ready. The reason people are advised to start on a more lower tech mapping format (which I agree with) is so that you can concentrate on getting the core competencies down and figure out how to make a level that doesn't break horribly with HOMs everywhere.

Some advanced map formats such as UDMF will give you complete control over pretty much anything you like including minute detail such as how fast lights blink and has such a powerful scripting system that you can turn Doom into Donkey Kong Country. Of course, this comes with the drawback of a large learning curve and depending on exactly what you want to do, the possibility that you will need to learn at least two types of scripting language.

You might as well give it a shot and see how you do. It's definitely easier to move on to more complicated stuff once you've got more basic mapping formats down to a tee though.

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Iceykiller said:

So basically, I want to be able to select the ZDoom (Doom in Hexen / UDMF Format) to get the most out of my mapping experience?

"The most out of the experience" is highly subjective. Depends on what you want to do. If you want effects such as stacked monsters and slopes, then yeah, you will not have much choices. For others, these are precisely an example of "going overboard" that you should avoid.

My advice would be to experiment with stuff and see for yourself what you like.

Iceykiller said:

I'm assuming I'll want to get the hexen.wad as well as ZDoom.exe to do that, correct?

Not at all. Hexen.wad merely contains Hexen resources. If you're not making a map for Hexen, you don't need it; all it would give you is a palette incompatible with the standard Doom textures.

The format was introduced by the game Hexen, that's why it's called Hexen format; but it doesn't require anything from Hexen. You can use it with Doom, Heretic, Strife, Chex Quest or anything else that's not Hexen too.

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Melon said:

Of course, this comes with the drawback of a large learning curve and depending on exactly what you want to do, the possibility that you will need to learn at least two types of scripting language.

You might as well give it a shot and see how you do. It's definitely easier to move on to more complicated stuff once you've got more basic mapping formats down to a tee though.


By scripting languages, do you mean languages like PHP or JavaScript? Because that's actually part of my career goals (I'm 18 and soon to attend college), so I say why the fuck not move on to a more advanced engine and start learning it if that's the case!

Gez said:

"The most out of the experience" is highly subjective. Depends on what you want to do. If you want effects such as stacked monsters and slopes, then yeah, you will not have much choices. For others, these are precisely an example of "going overboard" that you should avoid.

My advice would be to experiment with stuff and see for yourself what you like.


Not at all. Hexen.wad merely contains Hexen resources. If you're not making a map for Hexen, you don't need it; all it would give you is a palette incompatible with the standard Doom textures.

The format was introduced by the game Hexen, that's why it's called Hexen format; but it doesn't require anything from Hexen. You can use it with Doom, Heretic, Strife, Chex Quest or anything else that's not Hexen too.


Ahah, well, I will definitely want slopes and vertical height control on monsters (I just know I will, no point in saying "but you might not"), so I might as well get down with ZDoom.

So I basically just select "Doom in Hexen format" while using the zdoom.exe, and I'm good to go?

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Iceykiller said:

By scripting languages, do you mean languages like PHP or JavaScript? Because that's actually part of my career goals (I'm 18 and soon to attend college), so I say why the fuck not move on to a more advanced engine and start learning it if that's the case!

I meant ACS and DECORATE, two things that are specific to Doom mapping that allow you to create your own objects and in-game scripts. I'm not a programmer so I always referred to languages as "programming languages" and "scripting languages" to mean some sort of pseudo-code that works at manipulating the engine of some particular software, but I likely have the terminology confused.

To your other question, yes to map in Doom in Hexen format just select that from the list when making a new map and then set up zdoom.exe to be the port you test levels in (you will still want your resource wad to be doom2.wad). Note that UDMF (another map format) does everything Doom in Hexen Format can do but it's also a bit easier to do some things such as align the textures on floors and ceilings as you can do it directly in the settings of the sector instead of using ACS or dummy sectors. Might make it a bit easier to learn.

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Iceykiller said:

So I basically just select "Doom in Hexen format" while using the zdoom.exe, and I'm good to go?


Yeah.

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Iceykiller, slopes are definitely a nice touch to most any map when used properly. Making things like precarious paths around pools of lava is a lot more intimidating when slopes are involved, even if they don't have the slide effect (see TUTNT for a great example of the psychological advantage of this). If you want to make things even more intense with slopes, you could use a sector effect like low friction (works great for ice/snow caves) or weak wind (gives a slide effect).

esselfortium said:

I find that after working on advanced sourceport projects, vanilla becomes all the more refreshing and enjoyable to map for.

Sometimes, simpler is better. :)

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Eponasoft said:

Iceykiller, slopes are definitely a nice touch to most any map when used properly. Making things like precarious paths around pools of lava is a lot more intimidating when slopes are involved, even if they don't have the slide effect (see TUTNT for a great example of the psychological advantage of this). If you want to make things even more intense with slopes, you could use a sector effect like low friction (works great for ice/snow caves) or weak wind (gives a slide effect).


Yes yes, I decided to just go for it and load up the Hexen format for Doom. I liked the sliding and wind effects, definitely appreciated the "generalized effects" tab, because it gives more control over things.

This is definitely an informative thread!

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