View Full Version : Where is the big update?

09-27-2005, 09:08 AM
I'm wondering, where is the big update you guys were talking about? The news story about it has been on the main page for weeks, if not a month, or more.

Will you guys ever finish this MOD?


09-27-2005, 09:49 AM
I recall the "big update" being planned since before the release of the second demo, unless I'm mistaken. Maybe I am. I realize this is a volunteer effort and that people have lives, but still...that's kinda pushing it. Ah well, one cannot complain about stuff that's free. I guess in the absence of big updates, staff could do .plan updates or something...

09-27-2005, 01:59 PM
Yes, we do. At least we try.
Unfortunately we are all very busy, so things go slowly right now.

09-27-2005, 03:53 PM
I understand. What you have released so far is amazing, though!

09-30-2005, 09:51 PM
Will you guys ever finish this MOD?


Large mods like these take time, especially with a team as small as them. I don't expect them to finish, although they have done amazing things.

10-01-2005, 02:55 AM
I want to ask how hard it could possibly be to update a website, but then I remember the website I said I'd make for a club at school more than a year ago. I've started on it, kind of. Then again, I am the ninja of procrastination.

chris the cynic
10-01-2005, 12:08 PM
I don't expect them to finish
Have faith, faith has been rewarded with two demos so far, and it encourages the team. At least I think it encourages them.

10-01-2005, 12:29 PM
Be sure, it does, thanks :)

10-02-2005, 12:58 PM
Barring a 'big update', would it be possible just to take inventory quickly and update the progress page? /that/ is what I'm interested in, is seeing how much more is done. And it doesn't require a "huge site update".

Remember, the second demo came out... nearly a year ago now. ;) And it had a first demo prior to that... :) I think people are getting riled because it's slowing down now, and won't have a demo for this year. Too bad you don't have time to bundle one up, if you did, all these people would probably have the grace to shut their traps about 'never getting finished' and other such bs.

10-02-2005, 04:23 PM
Well, a quick, quick general rundown of whats been happening over the summer (Most of this information you can gather from the .plan updates, I'm just spelling it all out here):

The next three levels are nearing beta as well as some good progress on a few others.

The music through level 12 is pretty much finished.

The port to the MP code is going steadily.

That is about it. Our biggest obsticle right now is the MP port. It's not easy but we have some very capable people working on it right now.

If things seem slow right now it is only because some members are busy with real life issues. Our webmaster just started his first year of university and our project leader got a new job requiring him to move cities. Others got busy with school/work (like me - music teacher, whoa!) but I can tell you a ton of progress was made over the summer.

10-02-2005, 11:52 PM
Benevolence could you upload a second music suite? I'm in love with the first release... you have no idea how often I listen to it hehe. Even one song, I'll take anything I can get!

10-03-2005, 12:43 AM
Benevolence could you upload a second music suite? I'm in love with the first release... you have no idea how often I listen to it hehe. Even one song, I'll take anything I can get!

*sigh* I suppose so. ( Sorry for the slow link. Can't say for certain how long the link will be up so get it while you can. Also note, this may not be the final version of that track. Enjoy!

10-03-2005, 09:39 AM
Wow that's great! =D

I loaded up Dark Forces again and was surprised to hear the difference.. the original midis (or whatever format they are in DF) sound so dull in comparison, even though I loved them back in the day. Is it your Roland card that makes it sound so good, or are you carefully choosing the instruments when you remix them?

10-03-2005, 06:06 PM
benevolence do you have the notes (sheet) of the music. Cause as soon as I have 1000 dollars I am going to buy Colossus from quantum leap I plan on making a really real version of the Dark trooper suite, then after that I am going to remix it. 8) :dtrooper: :blaze6: :launcher: :band1

I love these things

10-03-2005, 06:39 PM
Answer to Question 1). Part of it is the Roland Module. The module I used for the mod is the Roland SCD-70 (http://www.edirol.com/products/info/archive/scd70.html). The MIDI files for Dark Forces were written with the original Roland Sound Canvas (SC-55 Patchset) in mind but was limited in that: A) They still needed to make it generic enough for playback on non-Sound Canvas synths/soundcards and B) The original SC-55 had only 16 channels and 24-28 voices of playback. My goal was to remix the soundtrack and make it sound better while still remaining true to the original Sound Canvas 'sound' as was intended. However I'm doing a lot of mixing/layering of instruments and in some cases use all 32 channels and 64 voices of polyphony to give it that extra full and rich sound. Plus I've carefully added some reverb which is missing from the original MIDI version (as well as adding a few things extra to align it more with the Williams score where appropriate).

As to whether or not I succeeded in staying true to the originals is up to each persons opinion. Eventually I'm going to make recordings of the original SC-55, AWE32, and FM synth versions (excerpts; not the whole thing) for comparison.

Answer to Question 2) No, I'm just working off the MIDI files. It wouldn't be that hard to turn the MIDI files into sheet music (NOTE: not hard but long and tedious) and I don't have any plans of doing that at this time.

10-04-2005, 12:31 AM
Wow, Ben, that's amazing. I might just be crazy, but I think that track has some indescribable bit of awesomeness added that makes it even better than all the versions of Dark Forces music I've heard before. That's definitely the best update we've had in a while. Keep up the good work!

10-04-2005, 10:47 AM
Have faith, faith has been rewarded with two demos so far, and it encourages the team. At least I think it encourages them.

Such achievements encourage the team. Sorry for being a skeptic but I must look at the situation realistically. This mod was started in 2002 (unfortunately, because LEC decided to milk the cash cow twice instead of deliver a solid hit the first time around, the mod had to switch to the newer game, thus burning valuable time). Three years have gone by and the team has produced only 3 completed maps, not to dismiss the great music and texture recreation. There are 14 maps in the game. Given that most of the resources are probably complete, it might take at least another 1.5 years to finish the whole thing off, given the size of the mod team. The JA community is already a small fraction of what it was to begin with, and is virtually nothing in comparison to the original JK community when it hit the two year mark. I find that the community might not be there when the DF Mod is completed.

I understand that the modders have lives. That's a good thing. That's more important. They shouldn't spend their lives on a mod.

Correct if I am wrong because I hope I am. I loved the mod but it seems to be going to slow to keep pace with the environment.

10-04-2005, 01:04 PM
What shall we do then? Stop everything? Or continue?
But you're right about the JO/JA community.
Newer games with newer engines appear,
and nearly no one is doing anything with older engines now.
We try to get as far as we can, but it takes ages indeed.
Perhaps one day ther'll be a Q5 or Unreal 3 DFMOD Mod ;)
But i don't think so, honestly.
Some game preferences change much over the years.
Me for example, i don't like to play those ugly monster games anymore.
I jut can't stand them. The degree of realism is still not perfect,
but it has reached regions that really cause bad nightmares.
And i don't want to have such "just for fun"...
Ok, i download demos and check them out, but not more.

Of course, matter of time counts, too.
I don't have anymore as much time as i had while sitting in school
or at university...
so really i have to chose carefully what i want to do and what not now :p

10-04-2005, 02:55 PM
It would be very disappointing if you stopped at this late date, after two demos. I know the big update is delayed again, as I mentioned before, an update to the progress page would probably be helpful. All these people are doomsaying because "most full conversions never get finished", but look back at the amount of time you've spent on it. The hours and hours that would be *wasted* if it weren't completed? And a lot of people still have JA, even if it isn't installed. Or could get it back cheaply at the store. If the DFmod is finished, it'd be worth it.

10-05-2005, 12:48 PM
I don't want this to die... Darnit, this is my dream job outside of real life, and I will not let this oportunity go to waste.

Testbase was going very fast, until... I ran into some new learning curbs, I got past them, had another great spot, and slowed down again, now that I am off a little vacation I deserved, I have ditched easygen terrain, and started crafting rock walls by hand. Even if this map gives me carpel tunnel by the age of 16, I will finish it, so I can proove to the world, I CAN MAP!!!

Then I will start Ramses Hed Docking Port, Cal-Seti, permitting Darth Linux lets me. Karrackoo has alot done on robotics, and I'm sure Salv can do somthing about the skeleton of a Nar Shaddaa, after the other three levels are out, I bet we will release the 6 level demo, then the next three maps are a breeze, we could make a 9 level demo, or we could just finish it.

10-05-2005, 01:18 PM
Please don't bet anything before you don't have finished your own map :p
The whole mod is simply :wid:

10-05-2005, 05:55 PM
I wish I could help in some way, but I have no experience in any of the things here. The only computer programs I really know is AutoCAD, Autodesk Viz (about 90% the same as 3DSMAX so that may help but I don't own a copy) A bit of photoshop (very little) and a bit of Adobe Illustrator.

10-05-2005, 06:22 PM
Yeah, that's the thing that really sucks... a lot of us wish we could help someday, but don't have the experience with the things needed to do it. :( Kinda frustrating.

10-05-2005, 07:52 PM
We could use a person with 3dsmax 4 for the roff files we need.

10-05-2005, 08:59 PM
I've found that the best way to gain experience with certain software is to just start using it and learn it as you go. That might just be how I learn best, but I can't see how you'd ever get anywhere if you let not having experience in something stop you from trying it. I mean, how would you ever start getting experience with something? Just find a tutorial or something and start playing around with the software; you'll quickly gain experience and either have found something you're good at or decide that your skills might be better used in another manner.

Speaking of joining the mod team, based on my current workload, I'm thinking it might actually be a possibility for me sometime. First, though, I'll have to finish a webpage that's a year and a half overdue, both to get it done and to prove to myself that I can actually stop procrastinating and work on stuff I like.

10-07-2005, 08:41 AM
As far as the JK/JA community getting smaller etc..tough it might be true, this aspect affects mainly multiplayer mods, that said, making an MP mod for a "dead" engine would be pretty pointless, no one is gonna play it. In the other hand you dont need anybody to enjoy a good single player mod, and provided that it is good then it shouldnt matter on what engine or how the graphics look like, as long as it is of good quality and provides a memorable single player experience. Which, if you dont mind me saying it, I think this mod provides.

10-07-2005, 12:12 PM
Thousands of people make daily visits here, massassi.net jk2files forums, haps forums, cortos forums(not that many ;)) And many other places.

When this is done, everyone that isn't named padawan when they connect to a server, will know about it. We just would need to immerse the people.

10-09-2005, 09:32 AM
Wow, what's up with all the negativism? "I personally don't think they will finish it" etc... Sure, that might be your personal thought, but if we keep saying this to ourselves and others, it will come true. I'd rather have it that they take it cool, and then get cracklin' at it later, then work so much that they puke over all DF related things ever... Take your time.

I'm easy... I guess :P

10-14-2005, 06:13 PM
Gromas is Beta ready.................progress methinks!! :guiness: :cheers: :mst3k:

10-25-2005, 01:05 PM
I hope this is released :)

10-26-2005, 02:20 AM
it will be released... but not right "now".
that takes a while like everything ;)

10-26-2005, 02:27 AM
When they say "Big Update" and "Coming Soon" it usually means something won't happen at least for a few months. ;)

As for the "negativity" look at it from the standpoint of somebody watching your progress. On average, it's taken you a year to do each map. So calculate that based on the number of maps in Dark Forces: 14... so the project will be done in 2015! 10 more years to wait!

No offense intended of course. ;)

At least you haven't fallen into the trap of Duke Nukem Forever, of upgrading to every new game engine that catches your eye and resetting the project!

As I said in the DF2 Mod thread, perhaps a faster way to get some progress on this would be to focus on a "multiplayer pack" (even though DF had no multiplayer). That would get the weapons and skins out there and generate interest. Obviously if you're still working with the limitations of the SP engine, of course none of the weapons would function the same way, but still. This part would be easy compared to re-creating the Single Player maps. I can understand for a project like this it's useless if you don't re-create the SP experience, but still. I think it would "ease the pain of waiting" for the fans a lot more!

So give them the 10 weapons, a few taunts, a handful of skins, and let them run around SECBASE in a deathmatch to tide 'em over, I say. ;)

10-31-2005, 04:00 PM
Hmm good point. Until now, we (the team lead) did not want to release any real multiplayer map to the public since we simply don't have enough time to make both,
single and multi player missions.
But we might have to reconsider that... provided the effort is less then we think now.

11-01-2005, 09:18 AM
Darth Linux (welcome Back BTW!!...long time no see on the forums) has also confirmed that Gromas is ready for Beta testing amongst the team members of DF MOD.


11-01-2005, 10:40 AM
Yeah. Honestly a lot of us would have loved to play Dark Forces multiplayer. Doom on DWANGO was really big back then and many were disappointed DF was SP only.

I heard rumors that an MP portion was in progress but never completed, and since the source for DF was never released to the public, we just had to dream until JK came out years later.

Toss together a couple of MP maps (secbase would work just fine as is... just make all the doors openable and remove the scripting), the HUD, all the weapons (maybe even a pickup item or two) and a handful of skins. Release that pack and you'll get tons of publicity, testing, and make the wait much more bearable for the fans.

And just do the stuff how you plan to do it for SP anyway, just in this pack they'll be fighting other humans and bots instead of AI. So you won't have wasted your time. It doesn't have to be elaborate like Coop (though we all want that someday too), just I'm talking Deathmatch & Team Deathmatch.

11-01-2005, 10:55 AM
An other idea would be to use the siege mode, but it has not been really investigated by the team actually.

11-01-2005, 02:12 PM
Siege would mean more work for you, but I'm not arguing against that, we need more Siege maps! ;)

But what would it entail? Kyle, Jan and a bunch of Rebel commandos going on a mission vs. a bunch of different Imperial units? Say to capture/Defend the Death Star plans or guard a Dark Trooper facility? A re-imagining of some of the Dark Forces missions where it's not just Kyle doing all the work? Interesting concept!

11-01-2005, 05:29 PM
Interesting, but really a lot of work, also in doing a concept for the missions...
thats why it won't be realized soon or at all..

11-01-2005, 07:41 PM
Hence why the deathmatch idea is a good starting point. ;)

At the end of the day we'd all love to go Serious Sam style and play the entire DF mission set from the drop off at secbase all the way to the final battle with General Mohc with Kyle and Jan dueling blasters or something, but that's right now a mad dream! At least here we could be running around dueling with Assault cannons on Jabba's ship or something with friends/bots.

11-02-2005, 11:37 AM
Speak for yourselves, unless deathmatch would truly be trivial to implement, I would rather have all efforts focused on the single player experience, which this team has demonstrated such a talent for creating. The deathmatch experience can more or less be replicated in any number of other games; single player campaigns are far more unique. PERSONALLY, I believe this to be the greatest product this mod can offer.

11-02-2005, 01:43 PM
If we're alredy throwing out ideas, I've had a similar thought to your siegetalk... And that would be to make Talay a siege map, with rebel troopers vs Stormtroopers/Darktroopers and reenact the wiping out of rebel forces. I know the rebels hardly had a fight at all, but it could be the "last surviving troopers" kind of thing... I think it would be awesome... On the other hand, seing a phase II dark trooper in full 3d at all would be awesome so... uhm... Never mind this post and keep on doing the single player :P

11-02-2005, 02:41 PM
Hey, we all agree with you, but the trouble is it's going to take them ten years to produce it. Wouldn't you rather wait 6 months and get an MP component?

It's not like they'd have to "give up" their time to work on the MP part, since they have already said they are going to use the MP engine anyway. They might as well release it while they're in the process.

Using your logic, there is no reason to make this game, because the single player experience can already be replicated in so many other games, and in fact it can be replicated perfectly in Dark Forces itself! The point here was to take advantage of this new engine.

Face facts, searching out keys, gunning down enemies and hitting switches are major old school when it comes to FPS's. Dark Forces was rather unique when it came out, but nowadays it's old hat. Republic Commando is a much more complex single player Star Wars FPS that doesn't feature Jedi, Force Powers or Lightsabers of any kind.

That's not the issue. The issue is that I figure this way the fans will have something to enjoy, rather than just hoping and dreaming of one day seeing the finished product "when it's done."

And as far Dark Forces Mods for other games, I don't know of any that exist. But what is Dark Forces, other than some weapons, models, and a certain "feel" to it? I think the fans would like a multiplayer portion, so it wouldn't be out of spirits to create it, and it would certainly be done a lot faster than re-creating the entire SP experience.

If they are serious about completing this, which I don't doubt they are, then this is a completely reasonable request.

Deathmatch WOULD be trivial to complete compared to the single player TC. Like I said, it's just a couple of maps and the skins and weapons. There's no scripting needed, no cutscenes, no AI (unless they want to), no voice acting (except a few taunts if they want to spice it up), and no having to deal with the restrictions of the SP SDK.

MP would feature the modeling and artwork, the "aesthetics" of this mod. So it would give the deathmatch of JA the "atmosphere" and beauty of Dark Forces. I think that would definately be worth seeing, and worth doing. They wouldn't need to give up anything in order to do it. And once they saw how much better the MP engine does it than SP, they would never need to look back.

The SP in JA will never be able to be like Dark Forces, because it can't really be tinkered with. The MP has virtually no limits. You could make the weapons and physics to your own specifications, to be just like DF, or better, whatever. It's a radical comparison. SP Dark Forces Mod using the JA SP engine would be like the first few levels of Jedi Outcast where you only have guns. Frustrating and boring. And while you're being frustrated and bored, you can go "wow, gee these levels look just like dark forces only prettier."

I think the MP engine does the game far more justice, and getting people into the spirit with a deathmatch mod would be a simple and good way to start that, and build up the faith of the fan community.

There, that's my 2 cents. ;)

11-02-2005, 06:31 PM
Much of the time in getting the demos out the door wasn't development as much as changing platforms. From JO to JA SP and now to JA MP. Once we get JA MP working like it should (likely the most difficult task before us right now) development will be much quicker. And I promise you once we get JA MP working, nothing short of an SP SDK, we will be finishing the mod in JA MP.

Things are moving and getting done! We aren't dead, I promise!

11-02-2005, 11:51 PM
Well converting the entire project to MP will be a lot of work certainly (but worth it in the end). Witness all the work RazorAce has been having to do with Coop. Of course you guys have "only" those 14 (?) maps to do, which is far less than JA had.

Converting the models and textures over isn't such a big deal. You don't have to do any coding, just use the regular JA gameplay. A blaster rifle works like a blaster rifle, etc. Now as to coding the new weapons I assume you really didn't have anything done in that regard anyway, since you couldn't do it in SP (I mean all you did was grab firing modes from other guns right? Like making the bowcastor shoot rockets to simulate a fusion cutter sorta, stuff like that?). So that means you'd only have certain weapons right off the bat, like the bryar, fists, ST laser rifle, concussion rifle (I know, it's nowhere close, but it's a fine placeholder), assault cannon (primary fire merr sonn rocket, secondary repeater fire), Thermal Detonators, fusion cutter (bowcastor as a placeholder), IM Mines (trip mines), Mortar (secondary TD's or Secondary Repeater)...and you could adjust the damage/splash damage values later to make them more "accurate" to DF.

11-03-2005, 07:25 PM
Just checking in to say I didn't fall off the side of the planet.

Testbase hit a speed bump, a bit of mappers-block, so I took a longer brewak than I planned

Salv and I talked terrain and everything is peachy except for possible lighting issues.

12-06-2005, 02:09 PM
Just in case you haven't noticed, DF MOD Team has very quietly slipped in a HUGE UPDATE. While Small in actual content, the update itself is HUGE, and the content is fantastic. 3 more maps, in 2006... Fest (aka Testbase), Gromas Mines (aka Blood Moon), and the Detention Center (aka Crix Madine's Fate). The Screenshots of the day are also beginning to show some new screenies from these levels as of today.

The release of these levels would mean 6 of the original 14 would be complete, and their team definately has at least 4 more in the works...Nar Shaddaa, Ice Station, Jabba's Ship, and Coruscant.

Nice going DF MOD Team, you have me all geeked up to play DF once again!!

One quick question to DF MOD though...has anything at all been done on levels 7, 12, 13, and 14?...and if so, can you put up a few screenies on the next major site update? Enquiring minds want to know!!

12-06-2005, 02:28 PM
Heh Mike, it's a dangerous question :snear:
Yes, some work was done... but those mappers left a long time ago already and they did not left much to work with.
Screenshots? not worth it, really.

We prefer to concentrate on the maps that are currently in the pipe :p

12-06-2005, 02:51 PM
Sweet! I must say I'm quite excited, and looking forward to it. Can't wait to see more screenshots, too.

12-06-2005, 03:51 PM
Weee. I think this is a very clever move. Releasing levels after levels (which will keep the community interested.) Great job guys! Nice intro ;)

12-06-2005, 07:17 PM
Well. I look at it like this....as a HUGE FAN of the entire DF/Kyle Katarn Saga, it would be great if all 14 of the original levels were finished. Having said that, If only the 10 WIP (whch includes everything that is finished and currently in production) end up getting done, I would be down with that as well. I would also however, along with the rest of the entire modding /gaming community, have to beg, plead, whine, cry, snivel, and grovel that the final level (Arc Hammer) gets done.

It would only make sense to have the Arc Hammer level (if only a smaller version..sans the puzzles, etc) as the Final level. The world needs to experience once more, the epic battle between our hero Kyle Katarn, and the Infamous General Rom Mohc in all of it's glory. You could simply do it as a duel if it all come down to the fact that it needed to "just be released", but I do think that from an architecture standpoint, the ship would be an easy build if you took the doomgiver map as a base from which to start, and then modified it to suit your needs,

Just a thought here.....Keep up the good work....I'm really excited to try out the next 3 levels...particularly the prison level. It was one of my original favorites!!!


12-06-2005, 11:57 PM
Ah, it pays to have inside knowledge. :) Glad to see the cat is finally out of the bag and it's not only still breathing, it's more vigorous and animated than ever before! Okay. Enough with the metaphors. Great job, guys! *thumbsup* as a humble fan, myself, I'm eager to play the next three levels, especially Gromas (so much atmosphere *drools*).

Ham Yoyo
12-10-2005, 04:28 AM
Thats great news. I just saw the intro and it looks very cool. I can't wait for the next 3 levels. I love JA and can't get enough SP levels.