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Gradius

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  1. Nice CockUI, bro. Loved *most of the demo. I found the interconnectedness a bit much with how zones were seperated by loading zones at first, until I realised I wasn't actually changing levels but just zones within a single level. That said, the level is still big enough that getting a bit lost is very possible. Wasn't a fan of the codex not pausing the game, as far as I could tell, or perhaps it was just the transition or the particular screen I was in. Seems like it should at least do so on lower difficulties. Or maybe it does and I just misinterpretted what was happening when I tried to pull it up during a lull in combat. Might be a tiny bit scarse on health pickups on the lower difficulties too. Not by much, I pulled through. But I found myself having to buy them a bit often. Enemies did often pot shot me from afar before I could get an angle no them. They also shoot through smoke grenades. If they're actually aiming for me, this feels a bit inequal, but for all I know they just blind fire through it. Anyone that's played Far Cry 1 knows that being sniped from a pixel on the otherside of the map through thirteen opaque obstacles is a frustrating experience. If this is the case, I'd say it needs tweaking, but I really didn't test it.
  2. If you're aiming for Zdoom you may as well just throw a ACS script in the level, since your decorate etc will be broken on any sourceports that don't support the script anyway. #Include "ZCommon.acs" script 1 OPEN { while (ThingCountName("enemy name", 0) > 0) { delay(35); } Floor_LowerToLowest(666, 8); } Is a starting point. Adapt it to whatever you need triggering as needed.
  3. The giant hitscan boss definitely has to win. Beyond that, lost souls (they're just not fun to fight at all outside of wads with dehacked patches to reduce their health, so the ability to do fun things with them is reduced), and oh yes, *every Doom 2 enemy that doesn't just shoot regular projectiles (HK, manc, and arachnotron, you're fine)*. I don't even particularly hate the Doom 2 enemies, but they're pretty situational. Archviles are certain death if you can't block their line of sight (aside from a lack of map geometry, other enemies impeding you, or two archviles rendering a single piece of cover ineffective), and even then they're difficult if there are too many corpses around them as a resurrecting enemy has a full size hitbox still, making actually hitting them difficult, and they're pretty damn difficult if you've not got a supershotty, rockets, or plasma. Chaingunners again rely on being able to peek them or one hit them, as their ramping damage will shred the player without proper cover. Pain elementals are just... a pain full stop so there's limited fun uses of them. Revenants... are somewhat dodgeable if you're good at the time. But for even mediocre players avoiding taking homing rockets to the face can be difficult, it's extremely easy to get rockets looping around you, making actually getting around a corner sufficient to lose the rocket an acquired skill. Without cover to peak around revenants have a relatively high skill floor. Players that can't manuever to throw their rockets into walls are gonna have a bad time. Other than my genuine hatred for anything that so much as resembles a lost soul, there's a huge amount of excellent maps that make use of the Doom 2 monsters, but they're so specialised to the scenarios where they aren't instant death (if it isn't a slaughter map with nigh infinite bfgs), as opposed to something like an imp that can go anywhere. The archviles and revenants also have a skill floor for players to really be able to deal with them safely, I imagine keyboard-only players who aren't used to strafing (I do know one) would find them immensely difficult.
  4. Gradius

    Bad energy drink?

    The thing about horror stories are that, well, they're horror stories. How better to get your teens to stop drinking sugary crap in a can then to spin outrageous stories of mass deaths? The truth is that they're relatively safe if still not very healthy. Millions of kids are drinking them daily, and any issues that arise are thus affecting vanishingly small percentages of drinkers. The chances of dying from smoking, alcohol, or other drugs is going to outweigh it by a huge amount. But not so many people decry alcohol for its ability to cause sudden death. Excessive use of energy drinks might be a risk factor for heart issues, but being a risk factor just means it worsens a situation, not that it is the direct and singular cause of a cardiac event. Slamming back several a day for years is likely to cause issues (perhaps from the massive amount of sugar that consitutes alone, or any number of other ingredients that might be bad for your kidneys when constantly drank to excess), but that's not a sudden event, and represents someone already taking very poor care of their body. The chances are if someone got into 'heart attack' territory (though heart attacks are normally the results of blockages, not merely unstable rhythms) the caffeine content would already have been causing severe palpitations or an unsteady heart rate. Major warning signs that would cause a rational person, even a young one, to slow down and perhaps see a doctor. The chances are these kids probably just had heart attacks. Energy drink is already rife enough that it'd correlate very easily, especially since overuse of them would be correlated even further in (overweight?) kids with poor diets and health, aka the at-risk group for heart attacks. Drug abuse, extreme exhaustion, or just poor diets that caused blocked arteries are all other things that might very well cause a teenager to have a heart attack, but when the narrative is 'monster is dangerous', that's what people look for. I've seen it in the minor hysteria over the brand Four Loko, where the mix of alcohol and caffeine together was considered such a fatal mix (either by virtue of the caffine inhibiting a person's ability to realise they're drunk, or by being taxing on the heart when combined with a depressant) that the drink was banned in many places, despite that supposed risk not actually being supported by actual research (and given I've yet to hear of the deathtolls arising from Jagerbombs, I don't expect to see any anytime soon). You see elements of the phenomena when considering how many hundreds of times more likely it is for the media to report a death due to taking ecstasy/MDMA versus a death due to taking paracetamol (50 deaths versus 200 circa 2014 in the UK - in 1997 this was actually a stunning 15 deaths versus 653 deaths prior to a reduction in the package sizes of paracetamol). Obviously the comparison isn't entirely fair due to one being used much more by many more people, yet a more common cause of death essentially never being reported lends the impression that one thing is more dangerous than the other by a much higher margin than it actually is. I'd wager alcohol or a lack of sleep has caused a thousand times the deaths that energy drinks could hope to among young people, yet that's a less dramatic headline than someone drinking four Monsters and falling down death, so the media reporting gives the impression of a risk disproportionate to the reality of an unhealthy but ultimately relatively safe product that would only represent a serious risk to a person's health in cases of pretty severe overconsumption over fairly long periods of time - and generally not because of the caffeine itself at that point. Chest paint, most of the time, is just chest pain, not a heart attack. Get it checked out if you're concerned, and quit the energy drinks if they're a trigger for physical symptoms. For my money, too much caffeine occasionally gives me palpitations. That's not a serious sign of anything on its own, but it's an unpleasant enough side effect to get me to tone it down. But so long as you're drinking even halfway reasonable amounts, caffeine is much less likely to kill you then all of that sugar.
  5. Gradius

    Music with vocals or only instrumental?

    Copyright infringement is hella cool and all the other kids do it. If we started shutting down every wad that packaged altered Doom / Doom 2 textures, are ones from the Raven games or Duke 3D we'd have maybe five maps on the site. If we cut out every wad that had a midi rendition of 90s metal songs we'd... technically not even really have the original Doom either. The important thing is to not flagrantly infringe on heavily protected works such as films and music. A cover of a song or a still image meme from a movie might be fine, but wholesale copying is just gonna bring on the cease and desist notice alongside DMCA takedowns. Minor infringements that don't really step on anyone's toes in a serious way and aren't likely to piss anyone off are the bread and butter of modding communities (and the ability to play as a Barney the Dinosaur fighting Stormtroopers with Deckard's pistol in Left 4 Dead is a life experience I'm not going to get otherwise), but there's a line that's just unwise to cross. Bundling in full mp3s of popular songs is definitely one of them. Whether it's morally okay is up for discussion, whether it'll get immediately taken down for the copyright violations is definitely not.
  6. Gradius

    Megawad?

    Romero's nine map 'megawad' really threw a wrench in the official definition. "15 maps or more UNLESS you also made Doom".
  7. Gradius

    How to make a good secret?

    There are a few types of secrets that I can think of: The 'I bet I could totally get there' kind: Ledges that seem like you could walk around them, platforms you can just about jump (especially SR50 jumps). These are pretty intuitive, and reward players for trying to push the limits of the map. But they can run afowl of Doom's physics. Trying to strafe run to a ledge only to fail it because you lost speed clipping against the wall is frustrating, especially if the time to get back to position is high or you take damage on the floor below. Another classic Doom use of this is to show the player an outdoor area through a window, which will cause players to wonder if they can get out there too or if it is purely visuall. The 'That looks out of place' kind: These are your misaligned textures, or slight inset pieces of wall that reveal secret rooms. They reward a keen eye, but run the risk of players spending too much time just hitting Use on every bit of wall if the differences aren't quite clear enough. The 'You didn't think to look there' kind: Switches (especially shoot switches) hidden from plain view by awkward angles or height differences. You can also hide ammo in corners and alcoves this way, but I wouldn't mark them as secrets in such a case. The 'I can see it, but how do I get to it?' kind: A power up on a pedestal or a locked room you can see into. These secrets entice players into solving them and provide secondary goals to the level, but don't offer immediate answers. The solution may lie in looking for hidden walls nearby, or using the automap to work out where the entrance to an area must be. The 'truely hidden' kind: An original Doom staple, walls that you can walk/jump through, or completely unmarked hidden walls. Unless you're already expecting them, you'll never notice them (short of the automap collectible), and it can induce simply going around the perimeter of the map hitting Use on every single surface which seems like an antipattern you wouldn't want the player to learn. The going rate for the 90s, but I think we can do better these days. The 'gotta go fast' kind: Timing based secrets. Doom allows one that is based on the amount of time in the level, you can also use linedefs the player crosses to open areas up. E1M1 has a famous one in the 'toxic ooze walkway' area. I'd make sure to always keep the action within audible distance of the player, so they have a clue that something has changed by them crossing an area. Otherwise it's far too an obscure solution in my mind. As for the action that triggers based on level time, you could get away with it if you make the action an obvious centerpoint of the level that the player can see straight away so they they can internalise the secret as something that has gotten quickly. Otherwise I'd avoid it entirely. Either way, it does mean the secret likely cannot be gotten on the first playthrough of a level unless the player just happens to be quick enough. The 'backtracking' kind: Secrets that get opened as you use switches etc and progress through the level. Thus you'll find them opened up as you backtrack, but aren't accessible the first time through an area. As well as some of style of secrets that the above can fall into: The 'chained together' style: Secret areas that lead into more secrets. A classic and simple form is secret doors that have more secret doors behind them. More complex forms might include hidden switches. The 'you've only got one shot' style: Secrets that cannot be achieved at certain points. Be it timed secrets or ones involving permanantly altering areas. Perhaps raising a bridge blocks the pathway, etc. They're a rarity among modern designs (outside of the general level flow just not allowing backtracking beyond a certain point), but occasionally you'll see secrets designed this way. The 'obscure actions' style: Hit a secret switch that's hidden from view somewhere and a door opens somewhere else. Makes the level feel very interconnected, but may induce some frustrating amounts of searching for what actually changed. The 'pyrrhic' style: The Doom 3 bonanza. Find a stash of ammo? A hidden weapon? Ha, be prepared to burn half of your ammo on this hidden wall of revenants I just opened. Occasionally a fun surprise, but if it becomes a regular occurance the casual players will likely just stop bothering to look for secrets if all they get is punishment for trying. If you're obvious enough with the design of an area, you can signpost that the player should expect a fight when collecting something though. For my money, I love secrets that reward me for spying places I can get to, and also ones that let me know that there's a secret to uncover. Ones that require genuine trial and error to find do very little for me and just feel frustrating.
  8. I feel like a 'set' and 'reset to default' line would be even more useful than having to apply the colormap to all possible sectors.
  9. Outside of visuals there's a few different bonuses: You can use height to complicate fighting, bringing enemies out of melee range or even hiding them or shielding the player (i.e. you can hide beneath a ledge from an archvile or revenant). You can use height to control routing through an area, allowing you to show areas before they're accessible without just having everything be a fence. Using platforming (or just bridges being raised by a switch) you can even allow players to cross over pathways they've been through earlier from another direction. Using drops you can create one-way pathways that stop a player from backtracking (though I'd always open a way up by the end of the level to allow secret hunting / searching for 100% kills). Platforming puzzles are also a nice addition to gameplay, though Doom's not great at them since you can only really run over gaps, not jump on demand (outside of certain sourceports). But they're great for adding tension, or hiding secrets. I'd say allowing the route through a given room to loop around and across it in interesting ways is the main benefit. You might climb to the top of the room to grab a keycard then drop back down to use it, shortening their path back to the start without the need for a bunch of locked doors.
  10. Gradius

    Changing music mid-level

    Doombuilder doesn't help it by having somewhat flaky Boom/MBF support. While you can place them by ID, there's no inbuilt MusicChanger things while under the Boom format (technically it isn't a part of the spec, but it's essentially a part of every Boom-compatible sourceport anyone's gonna be using), we get the also-not-in-spec sky transfer lines from MBF, but not the helper dogs or friendly flag, despite again MBF being the version of Boom pretty much everything supports. You can mostly fix it by editing the configs manually, but then it goes and breaks it slightly every update.
  11. Gradius

    How does a SpecialAction work?

    Okay, tried testing this out with an actual map. Firstly, I've still no idea why that parameter order was what was giving you errors. It *should* be monster first, not action. Secondly, I didn't pay nearly enough attention to Graf's comment. I read it as applying to the vanilla mapinfo SpecialAction_s rather than ZMAPINFO's slightly more powerful variant. Even though you can specify any monster type, as he said it: needs to trigger A_BossDeath, which precludes most enemies anyway. His comment wouldn't really make much sense applying to the vanilla action since you're limited to a premade set of [bossname]Special keywords anyway, so chalk that mistake up to a massive reading comprehension fail on my part. Add this ACS script to the map (and then hit compile) inside Doombuilder instead: I tested it with "DoomImp" and it works fine, so it should function correctly with your custom enemy. The lack of sky is probably just down to you not specifying one within the mapinfo.
  12. Gradius

    How does a SpecialAction work?

    Should be "Special Action = 91, "Floor_LowerToLowest", 999, 8" from what I can tell. You've swapped the parameter order.
  13. Gradius

    Mayan Reynolds | Now on Idgames

    Came for the name, stayed for the maps being pretty darn good. Great work.
  14. Gradius

    Unable To See Maps In My WAD

    That's definitely a corrupted (or otherwise empty) file. I'd search for doombuilder backups and try and load them. What's the size of the wad file?
  15. Gradius

    How does a SpecialAction work?

    That's an older more general format that takes a set list of special enemies like: "baronspecial specialaction_lowerfloor" But within gzdoom you should be able to use: SpecialAction = "Shadow Warrior", "Floor_LowerToLowest", tag, speed Subtituting the special action with what you need, and the parameters at the end with the ones you want. You may need to just substitute in the actor ID for your Shadow Warrior though, rather than the display name. But I've minimal experience with decorate. It may end up looking something like "SpecialAction = 100808, "Floor_LowerToLowest", 666, 8" when complete.
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