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Game Journal: "Cybil"

#91 User is offline   Lachesis 

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Posted 05 May 2020 - 09:34 PM

View PostMicMotorhead, on 05 May 2020 - 12:28 AM, said:

The total might end up being a lot less than 100, but I still haven't decided on the format for my music. My .wav sound effect files are outright tiny in size, but in the past, I haven't always been happy with the sound quality of .ogg music of the highest level of compression.

In my experience .OGG at quality 10 (highest quality, largest filesize) tends to be much smaller than .WAV files and mostly indistinguishable from them. I usually use quality 5 for game music. The highest level of compression (quality 0) does usually sound terrible.


Quote

Can the "play (file.filename)" command also play modules, with endless looping? I've only used it with .wav and .ogg files so far - which as far as music goes has the downside that there's no looping.

To play music through Robotic you should use this command:
mod "filename"


Quote

One thing I know for sure is that the embedded "set board music" function won't work for my game. My game handles all board-to-board transitions through teleports, which doesn't seem to work quite right with the alt+N music function.

Teleports work with the board mod the same way every other type of board transition works as far as I can tell. What isn't working right?
"Let's just say I'm a GOOD hacker, AND virus maker. I'm sure you wouldn't like to pay for another PC would you?"

xx̊y (OST) - HELLQUEST (OST) - Zeux I: Labyrinth of Zeux (OST) (DOS OST)
w/ Lancer-X and/or asgromo: Pandora's Gate - Thanatos Insignia - no True(n) - For Elise OST
MegaZeux: Online Help File - Keycode Guide - Joystick Guide - Official GIT Repository

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#92 User is offline   MicMotorhead 

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Posted 06 May 2020 - 07:37 AM

View PostLachesis, on 05 May 2020 - 10:34 PM, said:

In my experience .OGG at quality 10 (highest quality, largest filesize) tends to be much smaller than .WAV files and mostly indistinguishable from them. I usually use quality 5 for game music. The highest level of compression (quality 0) does usually sound terrible.



To play music through Robotic you should use this command:
mod "filename"



Teleports work with the board mod the same way every other type of board transition works as far as I can tell. What isn't working right?


mod "filename"

oh... I should have known! I feel like I've seen that command, but somehow forgotten about it over the years.
I looked at the online help file to see more details. It will even loop with .ogg files! Sweet!

And I'm gonna probably go with OGG quality level 5 if I end up having music in that format. Which is still possible.

The teleport thing: Maybe I'm stupid and have forgotten to test it in the newest version of MZX, which is where I'm working on my game now. But back when I used 2.83b and tested the alt+N function, it would reset the currently playing song whenever I was teleported to a new board - even if that board was set to play the same file. To be specific, it would play the song over from the beginning instead of continuing from the current position. And it happened every time I teleported. I may be wrong about this, but I vaguely remember making a game years ago that used music this way. And as far as I remember, it kinda depended on what boards I warped between, if it would continue playing or restart the track. If it is possible to play .ogg files using alt+N, it is possible that I tried that at some point. Maybe some of the issues only happen with certain file types. But like I said, varying odd issues I've experienced only ever happened in 2.83b. I've used both older and newer versions of MegaZeux with no issues, when it comes to a variety of small glitches.
Megazeux 2.83b would also frequently ignore alt+b and alt+t commands in the editor, so I'd have to press again once or twice.

I'm in doubt whether I've remembered to try playing music again in the new build of Megazeux. I definitely should, before I make any fuss about it!
If it's supposed to work just fine, it probably does!
I'm gonna try out some different combinations in my current game and see what works best for me. I haven't even decided on a file type or a program to write the music in yet.

This post has been edited by MicMotorhead: 06 May 2020 - 08:05 AM

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#93 User is offline   Lachesis 

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Posted 06 May 2020 - 09:03 AM

I checked the changelog, and sure enough that's a bug that was fixed back in 2010. That's why I wasn't familiar with it, sorry. It was caused by different boards with the same mod having different capital/lowercase letters in the path. There was another variation of that bug fixed more recently caused by mod paths containing different path separators. I think that sort of thing should work fine now. Regarding older port releases dropping UI key presses, that has definitely been fixed too.
"Let's just say I'm a GOOD hacker, AND virus maker. I'm sure you wouldn't like to pay for another PC would you?"

xx̊y (OST) - HELLQUEST (OST) - Zeux I: Labyrinth of Zeux (OST) (DOS OST)
w/ Lancer-X and/or asgromo: Pandora's Gate - Thanatos Insignia - no True(n) - For Elise OST
MegaZeux: Online Help File - Keycode Guide - Joystick Guide - Official GIT Repository

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#94 User is offline   MicMotorhead 

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Posted 06 May 2020 - 09:21 AM

It's cool. I could have saved myself a lot of trouble over the years by switching to newer versions of MZX as they came out... No doubt about it!

Yes, the new version of Megazeux is perfectly responsive. I got quite a few good things out of making the change from 2.83b to the new version. It's smooth sailing!

When I'm back home, I want to play around with music. It's about time that I find out exactly what I want to do with that part of the game. It's the single biggest thing left on the to do list that I haven't even even really looked at.

This post has been edited by MicMotorhead: 06 May 2020 - 09:22 AM

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#95 User is offline   MicMotorhead 

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Posted 20 May 2020 - 10:14 PM

A Youtube video inspired me to add a beginner difficulty, so the game now has 4 different difficulty settings. I make it clear which one is the recommended setting, but there's no harm in easy difficulty modes. I shouldn't be the judge of how anybody should play my game. I'm probably also going to leave the "debug" cheat functions active in the game, but just keep them unlisted in the control reference.

Posted Image

This post has been edited by MicMotorhead: 20 May 2020 - 10:30 PM

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#96 User is offline   MicMotorhead 

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Posted 20 May 2020 - 10:35 PM

Working on what is going to be some of the last areas in the game.
Getting palm trees to look decent isn't easy when everything is vertical rectangles!

Posted Image

This post has been edited by MicMotorhead: 20 May 2020 - 10:35 PM

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#97 User is offline   MicMotorhead 

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Posted 25 May 2020 - 09:40 PM

Ugh... so, the worst thing happened. Ok, the second worst. The worst thing would be loosing your world files.
The second worst thing that I've been fearing is that I'd realize that the issue with being able to teleport off boards after combat has been initiated is still possible.

I did some test scenarios and could make it happen consistently with the right enemy placements :cold: :cold: :cold:

Been trying out some things this evening and I've found a fix. But it means that I'll have to manually edit EVERY SINGLE ENEMY in the entire game!
I'm just going to commit seppuku instead. Ok, maybe not. But this one is gonna be rough to fix.


The issue is that enemies are able to trigger combat before they really get started, but they still carry out the rest of the script while the player teleports off screen. They roam around, then commence combat when the player is within range, setting "encounter" to 1, which is a counter that is used
to lock other enemies and prevent the player from using screen exits.
But somehow, no matter what, the enemy scripts manage to trigger combat and carry on that script, while simultaneously being slow enough to set the "encounter" variable to 1, that you'd have ~½ a second to touch an exit. So you'll teleport off the board, but "encounter" remains at 1 and this breaks everything, since it is intended to keep enemies from moving and teleports from activating. I can't just set "encounter" to 0 on "justentered" as a work around. It's hard to explain. I'd have to upload a demonstration to show why.

I tried upping the amount of commands in the global robot. Didn't make any difference.

Now I've tested a double fail-safe kind of thing. The enemy I'm using for the test checks to see if a new "lockcombat" variable is = 1 and will continue to patrol if so. The screen exit sets this counter. So the enemy sets a counter to block off the door and the door sets a counter to block off the enemy. Which ever is first to trigger decides if there will be combat or a teleport. I haven't been able to break this after many tries, so that's good. But... I'm gonna need a very large bottle of alcohol to get through this huge an amount of tedious editing. HUNDREDS of scripts. Urgh...

This post has been edited by MicMotorhead: 25 May 2020 - 09:51 PM

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#98 User is offline   MicMotorhead 

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Posted 25 May 2020 - 09:56 PM

Before the fix I've been testing one one board today, this is how the enemy and exit scripts look. This was the version that seemed to work last time I encountered the issue, but apparently it just made the timing needed to break things tighter.

SCREEN EXIT/TELEPORT SCRIPT:

: "colorchange"
: "justentered"
color c0a
wait for 2
color c0f
wait for 2
color c0c
wait for 2
goto "colorchange"
end

: "touch"
if "encounter" = 1 then "stay"
color fade out
disable saving
teleport player to "@f~0Burgwall North" at 49 2
end

: "stay"
end


ENEMY SCRIPT:

: "patrol"
if "encounter" = 1 then "patrol"
go RANDNB for 1
if "playerdist" < 2 then "combat"
wait for 3
go RANDNB for 1
wait for 3
go SEEK for 1
if "playerdist" < 2 then "combat"
wait for 3
go SEEK for 1
if "playerdist" < 2 then "combat"
wait for 3
goto "patrol"
end

: "combat"
if "encounter" = 1 then "patrol"
set "encounter" to 1
. "@enemy"
goto "combat&difficulty&"
% "~5ERROR: ~ANo difficulty level set."
% "~ADefaulting to difficulty 1 settings."
. "Standard levels."
: "combat1"
lockplayer
set "nmelif" to 15
set "nmedam" to 10
set "nmebaseini" to 25
set "$enemytype" to "brown_wolf"
set "enemyskill" to 0
send "CombatRobot" to "initiate"
end

. "+20% nmelif"
. "+10% nmedam"
. "+0% nmebaseini, enemyskill"
. "All rounded down."
: "combat2"
lockplayer
set "nmelif" to 18
set "nmedam" to 11
set "nmebaseini" to 25
set "$enemytype" to "brown_wolf"
set "enemyskill" to 0
send "CombatRobot" to "initiate"
end

. "+30% nmelif"
. "+20% nmedam"
. "+10% nmebaseini, enemyskill"
. "All rounded down."
: "combat3"
lockplayer
set "nmelif" to 19
set "nmedam" to 12
set "nmebaseini" to 27
set "$enemytype" to "brown_wolf"
set "enemyskill" to 0
send "CombatRobot" to "initiate"
end



: "dead"
set "$enemytype" to "none"
set "enemyskill" to 0
set "nmeini" to 0
set "nmedam" to 0
set "nmelif" to 0
set "nmebaseini" to 0
write overlay c02 "&nmeini&    " at 46 17
write overlay c02 "&nmelif&    " at 46 18
write overlay c02 "&nmedam&    " at 46 19
write overlay c02 "&nmebaseini&    " at 46 20
write overlay c02 "&enemyskill&    " at 46 21
goto "die&difficulty&"
% "~5ERROR: ~ANo difficulty level set."
% "~ADefaulting to difficulty 1 settings."
. "Standard levels."
: "die1"
% "~9The brown wolf falls to the ground."
% ""
% "~A+10 score!"
inc "moxy" by 10
inc "scorepts" by 10
unlockplayer
put "@exploring.mzm" Image_file "[0]" at 52 13
die
end

. "+25% score."
. "All rounded up."
: "die2"
% "~9The brown wolf falls to the ground."
% ""
% "~A+13 score!"
inc "moxy" by 10
inc "scorepts" by 13
unlockplayer
put "@exploring.mzm" Image_file "[0]" at 52 13
die
end

. "+50% score."
. "All rounded up."
: "die3"
% "~9The brown wolf falls to the ground."
% ""
% "~A+15 score!"
inc "moxy" by 10
inc "scorepts" by 15
unlockplayer
put "@exploring.mzm" Image_file "[0]" at 52 13
die
end


It's only the top part of the enemy script that is relevant, but I'm posting a full script as an example. I'm not of a programming background, which shows. But believe it or not, everything else in the game works well. Umm... as far as I know, anyway.
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#99 User is offline   MicMotorhead 

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Posted 25 May 2020 - 10:00 PM

So the enemy script starts if you're in range, but allows the player to teleport out before the SET ENCOUNTER = 1 line is triggered. I really thought the enemy script would be fast enough to get to the line where teleports are blocked off, but it doesn't work.

As I'm sitting here typing... Wait a minute... What if I insert a WAIT command just after the TOUCH label in the exit script... Hmm... That would be waaay easier, since there are 100x as many enemies in the game as there are exits. So if I only had to edit the exits... bad, but not terrible.

It would have to be a short WAIT command, so that it doesn't make the screen exits feel annoying to use, but maybe "WAIT for 1" is enough?
Gonna have to test it tomorrow.

EDIT: Maybe it's the "color fade out" command that's the problem. The player has, at that point, been greenlit to teleport, but the enemy script keeps going and sets ENCOUNTER to 1 while the fadeout happens. When I make my next game, I really have to make sure I control the orders of different scripts better. This is a mess.

This post has been edited by MicMotorhead: 25 May 2020 - 10:13 PM

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#100 User is offline   MicMotorhead 

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Posted 27 May 2020 - 05:49 AM

After a lot of fiddling about and a lot of editing, I think I realize that it's first and foremost an issue that has to do with the order in which MZX goes through scripts. It's still a lot of work to fix it, but at least now I understand the problem well enough that I believe that it will work properly when I'm done changing things. I took the worst, most tedious part of the work* yesterday, so it should be a solved problem very soon.

I've tried fixing this issue before, but when I recently realized that it was still there, the relative orientation of the involved objects was opposite... I understand now that I'd originally only fixed the "encounter" bug for scenarios where the enemy is being processed before the teleport object. I didn't really fully understand the issue then, so I thought I'd solved it completely.

*: I mentioned having to manually edit loads of monsters in my game world. The reason why I can't just copy-paste an edited version of each type of monster, making it less work intensive, is that most enemies have custom edits to their movement behavior, for reasons having to do with what their role is supposed to be in relation to the surrounding environment (Do they seek the player aggressively or can you get around them with some careful movement, or does the enemy stand still and guard a certain spot, etc.)

This post has been edited by MicMotorhead: 27 May 2020 - 05:57 AM

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#101 User is offline   MicMotorhead 

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Posted 28 May 2020 - 05:29 AM

Everything seems to work fine now. I couldn't break through the fail safes now, no matter how hard I tried and I've made sure that the changes don't cause any new problems.
I did end up editing every single enemy and teleporter in the entire game. Since I realized too late how much command order would mean in some cases, I had to edit all teleporters twice - the second time just to switch the order of two commands.

Enemies now check to see if they've been pre-emptively locked out by a teleporter and will idle if so.
If not, they will lock teleporters out of taking action.

Teleporters now check to see if they've been pre-emptively locked out by an enemy and will idle if so.
If not, they will lock enemies out of taking action.

And all enemies now have a "cycle 1" command inserted at the top level, since I realized that they had no limit for how often they would loop, if they were idling.
Not that I know if it really caused any problems, but as far as I know, it's bad coding practise to not cap them off if the loop doesn't have a wait command anywhere.

Now I can get back to doing fun things... This crap was all a real headache. Not gonna lie. :oops:
Hopefully I learned some valuable lessons.

This post has been edited by MicMotorhead: 28 May 2020 - 05:35 AM

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#102 User is offline   MicMotorhead 

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Posted 26 November 2020 - 06:34 AM

Back to working on the game after nearly half a year of doing nothing whatsoever with the game for some reason.
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#103 User is offline   MicMotorhead 

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Posted 03 December 2020 - 09:56 AM

I've decided to not make a soundtrack for the game, since I would no doubt have spent half a year doing that. It's gonna be ok, I think. I mean, the game is inspired by 80's PC games after all. They often didn't have music, or they had some wretched PC speaker music that you would frantically attempt to mute the moment it started playing. Silence, sweet silence.
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#104 User is offline   Galladin 

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Posted 06 December 2020 - 01:42 PM

View PostMicMotorhead, on 03 December 2020 - 11:56 AM, said:

I've decided to not make a soundtrack for the game, since I would no doubt have spent half a year doing that. It's gonna be ok, I think. I mean, the game is inspired by 80's PC games after all. They often didn't have music, or they had some wretched PC speaker music that you would frantically attempt to mute the moment it started playing. Silence, sweet silence.


Or you could download stuffs from ModArchive... :p
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#105 User is offline   MicMotorhead 

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Posted 07 December 2020 - 07:28 AM

View PostGalladin, on 06 December 2020 - 02:42 PM, said:

Or you could download stuffs from ModArchive... :p/>


I could. But I reaaaaaallly don't want the game to have a bunch of peppy mod tunes. I mean, I love stuff like that, but it's gonna feel way too busy for the game. If the game is gonna have any music, it's gotta be something mostly low key.
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#106 User is offline   MicMotorhead 

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Posted 04 January 2021 - 06:55 AM

Did a lot more work on the game over the holidays.
Would have been more if I didn't get caught up in playing Might & Magic VI and Daggerfall.
Might and Magic VI is a great game and I can't believe I never really bothered giving it a proper chance before.
There are so many little details in the game's design that I admire. I like how shops are quite differentiated from each other, for example.
Playing the game motivated me to go over a lot of details of my own game and do some improvements. My shops were already pretty diverse, but
I decided to make them even more so, and to add more special NPC's that offer varying services.
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#107 User is offline   MicMotorhead 

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Posted 11 January 2021 - 09:16 AM

Some pretty big changes/additions have been made to the game over the last couple weeks, so I'd say I'm making good progress.

- Added several items/weapons/skills/costumes to the game.
- Several NPCs added.
- Improvements to the interface, making the most important information stand out.
- Many bug fixes, typo corrections, balance improvements.
- A new "super hard" difficulty added.
- Upon starting the game, you now select between 3 different starting loadouts. They're not completely different "classes" like in a typical RPG,
but provides different starting inventory items.
- This starting choice also determines what unique "long time friend" the main character will know in some town in the game world. Each of these NPCs provide
some sort of unique service that other starting options won't have access to. This might sound like dangerous feature creep, but it's already mostly done.
- Changes to MZM files that make enemy combat illustrations look a bit better.
- Made MZM illustrations for enemies that didn't have one yet.
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#108 User is offline   Padz 

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Posted 29 January 2021 - 09:58 AM

This looks really great. I particularly like the art style and rogue like appearance. Looking forward to trying it out itís right up my street.

Also fantastic to see a game being worked on fairly continuously!
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#109 User is offline   MicMotorhead 

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Posted 09 February 2021 - 07:11 AM

View PostPadz, on 29 January 2021 - 10:58 AM, said:

This looks really great. I particularly like the art style and rogue like appearance. Looking forward to trying it out itís right up my street.

Also fantastic to see a game being worked on fairly continuously!



Ooops, didn't see your comment at first.
It's not quite a roguelike, but it kinda has some slight inspiration from games in that vein. I love roguelikes!
There's definitely smaller and larger stretches of time where I don't work on it, but I do get some work in usually at least bi-weekly and sometimes every day for a week or two in a row. And when I'm not working on it, I'm usually thinking a lot about it and noting down ideas. Recently I've been thinking about a better way of doing the story bits, than what I had planned.
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#110 User is offline   MicMotorhead 

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Posted 09 June 2021 - 12:27 PM

VERY slight work done on the game over the last handful months. Hopefully something more substantial soon.
You'd almost think I didn't want to work on it! (not the case, actually - I'm just lazy)
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#111 User is offline   MicMotorhead 

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Posted Today, 01:02 AM

Actually working on the game again now :pirate:

The game mostly looks the same, but it's getting bigger and bigger. Soon, 6 out of 7 main areas will have been completed!
Some features have also been fleshed out and the interface is a bit cleaner now - highlighting the most important stats over the rest.

A lot of important changes have also been made "under the hood". Mostly stuff that can be described as rule changes/adjustments for the
combat system.

Posted Image
Big: https://i.imgur.com/gxLY0yB.jpg

Posted Image
Big: https://i.imgur.com/WxWFIhL.jpg

Posted Image
Big: https://i.imgur.com/i24oQps.jpg

6 of 7 areas sounds good, but the game is really quite far from 85% done if you count things like story, music and the final boss.

(In a ½ year old post above I'm saying the game won't have a soundtrack... that was just my burnout speaking. I do want to make a full soundtrack.)

This post has been edited by MicMotorhead: Today, 01:13 AM

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