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Pain Elemental PAIN

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Since you all were so wonderfully helpful with my last issue, I figured I'd come back with my latest conundrum.

I got the idea to have a courtyard section with a Pain Elemental (or two, or three, or...you know). Then I though instead of windows, why not have little gaps in the wall (with a MIDBRN or MIDROCK texture) that it can shoot Lost Souls through, so that the level basically gets spammed with them?

I thought it was cool, but now the biggest problem seems to be that THE P.E. shoots from right against the wall, and no Lost Souls get generated. What should I do to keep him back away from the wall? I tried putting a couple more P.E.s right behind him so that he'd be in their way, and then they would shoot into him and hopefully mitigate the problem, but they just seem to infight to death with their own progeny when I try that.

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A larger chamber and some teleport lines might help. Not a perfect workaround, but Pain Elementals are generally awkward to use in the manner you're trying.

Just be sure to keep the PE in place with some small Block Monster lines.

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rabidrage said:

I take it block monster lines don't prevent Pain Elementals from shooting Lost Souls through them?

No, that's wrong (only sometimes, due to a bug, they pass through). But BaronOfStuff meant it like this: Pain elementals have a perimeter of 62. Lost souls have perimeter 32. Form your monster-blocking lines to make about 60-wide gaps, so that PEs cannot pass through but lost souls can, at least sometimes.

Also make sure that there's enough space above your pain elementals, because they spawn their lost souls 32 units (?) higher than their own Z-position is. The sector height should be at least 88 units for safe lost soul spawning, I think. (56 is the height of a lost soul, +32)

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Kappes Buur said:

Why worry about dealing with PEs? You could simply spawn a number of Lost Souls.
Unless, of course, you need the PE sounds.

It's all about chaos. The idea is that you don't have a fixed number of Lost Souls, so you have no idea how many you'll end up facing. The PEs go from hole to hole and spit them in at you (or monsters who have accidentally shot them while trying to hit you). Theoretically everywhere you go in the level after the PEs have seen you, you'll randomly encounter Lost Souls.

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When I did the P.E. for FreeDoom, I found the spawned lost soul appeared about where the nose of the P.E. would be. I made the graphics match.

The spawed lost soul has no freedom until it is spawned. If it would be spawned in some other object, or wall, it will fail to spawn. The death spawning of 3 lost souls is more random and needs more room.

Tiny Blockers (4 to 8 units) separated by 64 units will impede the P.E. without interfering with the lost souls much.

It may be that the P.E. do not line up with your openings when they fire, so at creation time the lost soul is failing the free space check against the wall linedefs.
The P.E. do not do any validity check when they fire, any sight line is adequate to fire, but is not adequate for survival of the lost soul. This is worse when they fire at an angle.

Solve this by using tiny blockers (L or T shaped) to make a slot the P.E. can fit into that aligns it with an opening. The P.E. then cannot get within 32 of the wall without being in a slot that aligns it with an opening. Then make the opening larger (horz. and vert.) until the lost souls succeed.
Then you will have some idea of what the conflict limits are.

Making the slots a little wider makes it easier for the P.E. to get in them, but then window openings must be larger. The distance from the slot guides to the edges of the window openings must be small enough that the window edges do not get into the lost soul spawn space.

Widen the windows so they can fire at an angle too.
Don't do all your tests right in front of the wall opening. The P.E. are NOT going to time their firing to only fire at an angle that works. You are always going to lose lost souls near the edges of the those windows.

There is going to be a range of angles where lost souls are fired, but fail because they touch the edge of the window. There is going to be a range of angles where they fit through the window without touching it. You probably want the success range of angles to be greater than twice the failure range of angles, just to get a 50% success in firing lost souls.

This will probably double the width of your window opening at least.
You will be sorely tempted to make the windows a continuous slit.

You do not need to use linedef blockers. A candelabra on each side of every window slot should work too. A little easier to edit.

Block the vision of the P.E. at angles that where you do not want them to fire. This requires vision blocking walls outside the windows, possibly arranged like columns about 32 units from the wall.

Bulging the wall at each firing window helps much too. It reduces the interference from window edges considerably because the P.E. can get into the bulge and can turn within the bulge.

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I've just invented something. PEs can be held in their closets simply by a low ceiling put above them, but not exactly above them, rather "behind them" a little, to prevent them flying up; and then putting a low floor in front of them to prevent them going forward. Example wad below. For whatever reason, it doesn't work in ZDoom-based ports (PEs spawn no lost souls at all). Does anyone have an idea why?


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Boom changed behaviour associated with validating whether a Lost Soul spawned by a PE is allowed or the Lost Soul is destroyed.

An noticeable example of the changed behaviour is the caged PE's on Doom2 Map28; In Vanilla they can reliably fire through the impassible line, but in Boom they can't.

ZDoom inherited that changed behaviour and I imagine any Boom supporting port has.

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I don't know if it can be done in other map makers, but when I make my map in GZDoom builder, I make the majority of enemies spawn in over time when you run over linedefs. So they pop in from time to time, or not depending on where you run.

I know it can be done in Doom Builder 2 or GZDoom Builder if you make the map Doom in Hexen format and use the 135 thing spawn feature on a linedef, then it teleports the particular thing you select in an area you tell it to.

But if not then yeah, somehow trapping a pain elemental in an area could work. An idea I had was to make the room the same size as the Pain Elemental and block any exit except the far too small window provided for Lost Souls.

So like you have the room, and the window is sort of like a short tunnel (So when walking by you don't see the Elemental but he sees you).

I made an example, it is pretty rough but I think is the general idea of what you were going for?


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I can definitely say that it works similarly. The PEs can see you but can't go after you, but the Lost Souls can get into the corridor and attack. In my WAD, though, I've got a little hole in the wall that the Lost Souls can fit through, and it's up high where the player can't get through, so it's not some invisible wall trick. I think it winds up looking better that way. I seem to have gotten it to work at least sometimes by just spamming the courtyard with PEs. We'll see how it works out.

I often make the mistake of going up to the hole, getting their attention and then waiting there. Instead I just need to play the WAD and let things happen organically. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. And you do have the option of going out into the courtyard where, if you don't kill the PEs, you're probably gonna die. But it's worth it for the secret stash of stuff on the other side!

As a side note, I really did not foresee this WAD taking a month, possibly more, to create--but I am loving it. Today I managed to edit in ceiling turrets from Strife. :)

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Yeah, that's what I tried to make, although I didn't put the windows high up, but on player level. I also darkened the room so it doesn't look like any Elementals are there.

Here's an attempt with spawning them in. Whether or not your map set up allows this I dunno, but it can be done this way...unfortunately depending on where you are you can hear them teleport in, you'd have to mess around to get them far enough to not be heard.


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That limits the number and makes them predictable. If we combine your two examples we come close to what I'm trying to do. But like I said, I seem to have gotten it to work somewhat. I guess I'm comfortable with the outcome I've got.

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It only limits the outcome depending on how many times you or a monster walks past a line that they can trigger.

If it were in proper levels with many places to go, you or they may or may not trigger more to come depending on where you all walk, that's the angle I was getting at. With that teleporter it can spawn in an unlimited amount of them, these aren't taleported out of a room, but rather spawned in using their spawn id numbers. Like having a Pain Elemental in a room....but not actually having him anywhere at all.

I have done it with items before, if I felt the need for someone to keep needing a constant supply of whatever, things can be spawned in indefinitely.

But yeah, if you have a way you are comfortable with then that's what counts, I was just putting up some other ideas.

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I appreciate your ideas. It's very possible I'll use that spawning feature in the future. It has a lot of potential uses, like the one you mentioned.

When I ran through your level, however, they only seemed to spawn in once per line. Once I killed a few of them they stopped coming. Was repetition just something you chose to leave out of your example?

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Now that is rather odd, the line is supposed to be triggered multiple times....

I put a couple in for the player to run over, and one for the souls to run over...all should be repeatable.

It says so in DoomBuilder, the boxes are checked.

The only thing I can think of is that the linedefs might be quite particular. I only made them go across half of the corridor, to make it a hit an miss thing for randomness. But if no more spawn in no matter, then I don't know why....

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