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Default port configs

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It seems that whenever I install a new port, I have to reconfigure sooo much.

For some reason ports usually have 640x480 windowed as a default video mode. That's, like, really small on a modern monitor. And do most people want to play windowed? Or maybe it's done this way to ensure that the port starts up for everyone (like perhaps fullscreen can crash on some systems? I don't know).

Both PrBoom-plus and GZDoom default configs have always run off (come on!), and when you press the left\right arrows you turn instead of strafing! Is that really what's popular nowadays? It seems to me like only a keyboarder would want to work it like that. Also both ports suggest playing with vertical mouse movement enabled, which I thought is a very hated feature.

PrBoom-plus also has gamma correction 4 by default, which looks really bright and annoying for the eyes.

Maybe I'll investigate other ports later... But yeah, who else thinks that default configs could have been much better?

1 hour ago, Memfis said:

For some reason ports usually have 640x480 windowed as a default video mode. That's, like, really small on a modern monitor. And do most people want to play windowed? Or maybe it's done this way to ensure that the port starts up for everyone (like perhaps fullscreen can crash on some systems? I don't know).

That's precisely the reason. The game needs to start in a mode that actually WORKS.

1 hour ago, Memfis said:

Both PrBoom-plus and GZDoom default configs have always run off (come on!),

Since you are the first person to mention that I think I can assume that 'off' is the correct default. :P

1 hour ago, Memfis said:

and when you press the left\right arrows you turn instead of strafing! Is that really what's popular nowadays? It seems to me like only a keyboarder would want to work it like that. Also both ports suggest playing with vertical mouse movement enabled, which I thought is a very hated feature.

No idea, I play with the number pad and map Strafe to 7 and 9, so I have both nearby.

1 hour ago, Memfis said:

PrBoom-plus also has gamma correction 4 by default, which looks really bright and annoying for the eyes.

Probably a remnant of CRT days and a dark monitor for the developer. Agreed that this is a stupid default.

Just checked current default settings. Autorun is ON by default, gamma is 0, vertical sensitivity is 1 (10 for horizontal), WASD for movement.

Left/Right for turning, that's what I use if I want to play on keyboard (WASD for movement, Left/Right for turning and Up for fire).

Edited by entryway

Everyone's gonna have different control setups. Just look at all these topics about 'em! Trying to find the popular setup is the best bet, if there's even a majority in that regard, and even then you want to make sure certain settings work for everyone in default (video mode, as mentioned). I'm sure there are ways to make 'em better, but I imagine it's awfully low on the priority list for both users and developers.

I setup and re-setup configurations all the time, and I've found it's something I simply got used to. Only takes a minute or two, and you'll get at least that much Doom time when you're done. (If I did have something to complain about menu-wise, it'd be the menus themselves, but that's an even hairier mess in terms of who likes what and a sense of what "better" entails.)

Last time I set up a clean installation of GZDoom it had cursor turning, vertical mouse movement and didn't set itself to the desktop resolution automatically. After I set those options and a dozen others, I started up Heretic. Oh, look, separate controls for this game, fun! :D

And yeah, Always Run should be Off by default.

Spoiler

WWWWWAAAAAAAAAASSSSSSSSSSDDDDDDDDDDDDDD  WASD WASD WASD

Pretty sure that commercial games have all the fallbacks they need in case their default mode, native fullscreen, doen't work. Meanwhile Doom source ports can't afford to investigate all particular computers for failing fullscreen, so they just default to the safe 640x480 windowed mode.

Autorun should be off and controls should be default-vanilla compatible, though it's okay to have extra bindings set for modern gameplay.

Finding the default fullscreen mode, at least for Windows, is trivially simple:

HDC screenDC = GetDC(0);
int width = GetDeviceCaps(screenDC, HORZRES);
int height = GetDeviceCaps(screenDC, VERTRES);
ReleaseDC(0, screenDC);

Why does it always work? If that resolution wasn't working the desktop wouldn't be visible. With LCD monitors it is also the resolution that 99% wants to use.

Man, I just think of how much work it took to provide all of those options to the user, vs. hard-coding them. I'm sorry, but compared to the coding efforts, you having to set those settings once (the program is nice enough to preserve them, minimizing how much you have to do) just doesn't seem like asking too much of you.

What would be really nice is a launcher, with its own set of savable settings, that understands how to configure each port's settings, and how to retrieve each port's settings to update itself.

This launcher would apply your favorite settings to each and every port you run. This would work pretty well, since most settings are available in the bulk of ports.

Even a program that just synchronizes settings would be nice to have. Give it a list of file paths and port types, and a massive config file, it would be rather simple to build. Building the config file that resolved differences between various settings, and ports would be substantially more difficult.

The third (and the coolest) option would be for us to define a Doom Player Setup file format. Such a file could be read by all supporting ports. This file would define the following properties:

Player name, Gender, Skin, Keyboard/mouse/joystick key bindings for movement, use, look, etc, # of maps played, Kills/secrets/items, map time, and other stats.

All your installed ports could point to the same Doom Player Setup file, and use its settings to configure the port, and, optionally store game statistics. This would be sweet for multiplayer, or even single player, and it would solve the movement/action bindings problem in any port you use. (of course, I'm going to think about it in a compatible way :) Unfortunately, it just doesn't make sense to try to make all ports read the same config file for all settings. But the "DPS" file would get you "up and running" without hassle. I kinda like this idea, if I may say so myself :)

Any takers?

A new format to solve some inconvenience? Naaah.

How about GZDoom using the desktop resolution at fullscreen as default and the overwhelmingly popular WASD controls, too?

1 hour ago, VGA said:

A new format to solve some inconvenience? Naaah.

It's not about inconvenience. I should have called it something more compelling, like "Doom Player Identity" file, but, we were talking about setup. The Player Identity file joins your human identity with DoomGuy. Basically, it's a method allowing you to have a savable "player character". Imagine joining a multiplayer game, even an internet-hosted game. You could supply this file, which would configure the game with your player info. Part of that info identifies you to the server: "Name, gender, nickname, skin, avatar, whatever". It could contain player stats. The file could also be used to set up your preferred keys for movement, which is what ties the concept into a discussion on setup.

Each time I play LAN coop with a friend, we spend the first 2 minutes setting up player name, translation color, and key bindings. With the PLayer Identity file, you'd just choose your player from a drop-down list, and be ready to go.

It solves the OP's issue, and provides much more. Bonus if it works across ports, which is do-able.

1 hour ago, VGA said:

How about GZDoom using the desktop resolution at fullscreen as default and the overwhelmingly popular WASD controls, too?

Some computers have difficulty starting up full screen graphics. So, as a default guaranteed to work, windowed mode 640x480 is not unreasonable. Default WASD might make sense, as long as original (arrow) keys are also bound. (Think veteran Vanilla/first-time GZDoom player)