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Old 04-07-2003, 04:46 AM   #1
Silent_Thunder
 
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Just a few questions about this MOD...

I just got done playing through the demo for the Dark Forces Mod and I must say, it's extreemly well done; I was amazed at -- even at such an early stage -- how professional everything looked, just like a real payed developer team, and how authentic to Dark Forces everything felt .

Anyways, I just had a few questions about this modification. Some of them might have been covered by the FAQ, but I realize that, on the FAQ, you're going to be as conservative as possible with your answers... But here I can get answers like, "yeah, currently this and that is going to be like this, but I actually think it's going to be changed into this later.." etc. So:

1. Are we going to be using the Quicksave system of JO, or are you going to implement the life system of Dark Forces instead? And on a similar note, will we have real healing kits in the final game, and will it remove the 'deathstar plans force heal' found in the demo?

2. Just out of curiousity, but do you guys plan on adding a lot of new features that the original DF did not have? I'm not complaining ofcourse, and I realize some things have to be changed, but how do you guys plan on using Snowtroopers for example? I don't recall seeing them in DF. Not that thats a bad thing ofcourse! But I'm just wondering.

3. Is the final Mod going to include DF sounds, JO sounds, or a mixture of both? In the demo I noticed some of the things such as imperial officers used both new and old sounds... What sounds will be used in the finished product?

4. I absolutely love the old DF music, and thought it sounded great in the demo... The music will be kept the way it is for the finished game, right?

5. I kept reading about an SP SDK, or something along those lines (apparantly something Raven has to release). The FAQ said that the Mod will have the same gravity, scale, etc without an SDK. It even said that the Dark Trooper may only be made correctly if an SDK is released. I was wondering, how is the progress going on, on those things that need an 'SDK'? Do you guys have an 'SDK' now? Is it working ok without 'one'?

6. The FAQ said without an 'SDK' some weapons WILL be missing. Is there any idea on the status of the weapons, and if all of them will be included? BTW I thought the new Bryar pistol looked AMAZING. It captured the old Dark Forces look perfectly I thought.

7. I know the FAQ said that there's an extreemly good chance that flying enemies from Dark Forces will fly in the Mod... But that FAQ is kind of old I thought. I was wondering; is there any concrete information about wether or not Dark Troopers will fly in the Mod?

8. The gravity and jumping seemed alittle different to me than what I was used to in JO. Has anything been tweaked (to make it more like DF) in that regard? Maybe the jumping sound effects are playing tricks on me .

9. And lastly, are there any plans for a new demo to be release anytime soon? Secret Base is great and all, but it's such a short level...

Anyways, thanks so much for taking the time to answer these questions. I absolutely can't wait for the final release of the Mod in December!

PS, nice work on the new Kyle and Jan models, they look much better than before... especially Kyle. But I think the Gamorian guard needs wider shoulders and a fatter belly... I might be wrong but I thought something seemed missing.
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Old 04-07-2003, 07:51 AM   #2
The_One
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I'm glad you enjoyed the demo. I think you just highlighted the fact the FAQ needs a fairly big update

Anyway, here are the answers to your questions:

Quote:
1. Are we going to be using the Quicksave system of JO, or are you going to implement the life system of Dark Forces instead? And on a similar note, will we have real healing kits in the final game, and will it remove the 'deathstar plans force heal' found in the demo?
At this stage it is more than likely we will be using JO's quicksave system. The Dark Forces system is outdated now and would be hell to code in. I had an idea I have not yet shared with the team, but I was thinking we could perhaps have a limit to how many times you could quicksave per level. That would be a compromise, but until you hear otherwise JO's quicksave system it is

Quote:
2. Just out of curiousity, but do you guys plan on adding a lot of new features that the original DF did not have? I'm not complaining ofcourse, and I realize some things have to be changed, but how do you guys plan on using Snowtroopers for example? I don't recall seeing them in DF. Not that thats a bad thing ofcourse! But I'm just wondering.
There will be some features - many of which are standard in a modern FPS. But in terms of the actual game, you can expect to have to fight/sneak your way out of the prison with Crix Madine and escape from Jabba's Ship, Jan by your side The Snowtroopers will appear in the snow level (The Robotics Factory) to add realism to the map. You can also expect to find some mounted weapons throughout the course of the game. Anywhere where we can add to the sense of realism, we will. You'll just have to play it to find out where

Quote:
3. Is the final Mod going to include DF sounds, JO sounds, or a mixture of both? In the demo I noticed some of the things such as imperial officers used both new and old sounds... What sounds will be used in the finished product?
You will find a mixture in the final product aswell. However, whenever we can replace DF sounds, we will. The quality of the sounds is pretty shabby, so we are always on the lookout for replacment sounds. We have already taken some from DFII: JK, and are bound to find more from other games.

Quote:
4. I absolutely love the old DF music, and thought it sounded great in the demo... The music will be kept the way it is for the finished game, right?
Yep, there will be a Dark Forces soundtrack in the final game, like it was in the demo.

Quote:
5. I kept reading about an SP SDK, or something along those lines (apparantly something Raven has to release). The FAQ said that the Mod will have the same gravity, scale, etc without an SDK. It even said that the Dark Trooper may only be made correctly if an SDK is released. I was wondering, how is the progress going on, on those things that need an 'SDK'? Do you guys have an 'SDK' now? Is it working ok without 'one'?
I really should update that FAQ Anyway, an SDK is a "Software Development Kit" - these are all the tools a modder needs to truly edit the game, including source code etc. We have a SDK, though it does not include the single player source code, making it a incomplete SDK. We need the single player source code to make new weapons, flying enemies and a bunch of other stuff. We won't be seeing this any time soon either. So, we have found a work-around (hope you're still following). A while back a JKII development team known as "Wired Lamp Studios" began to work on a co-operative multiplayer MOD. They gave up a few months later, but released what they had done so far. Now, because this was co-op, it was effectively re-creating Single Player inside the Multi Player engine - albeit in a condensed form. We picked up from where they left off, and are introducing SP functionality into the MP engine - in what we call SP LITE. So, we will effectively have written our own source code, which we can tame to our own needs. If you followed that, credit to you! If you didn't, don't worry because in short it means we can do what we wanted to, we're just going about it in a different way (dubbed by some as the "crazy method").

Quote:
6. The FAQ said without an 'SDK' some weapons WILL be missing. Is there any idea on the status of the weapons, and if all of them will be included? BTW I thought the new Bryar pistol looked AMAZING. It captured the old Dark Forces look perfectly I thought.
All weapons will be included, indeed a couple are already working in game. All models are made, and skins are being produced at the moment. Then they just have to go in game

Quote:
7. I know the FAQ said that there's an extreemly good chance that flying enemies from Dark Forces will fly in the Mod... But that FAQ is kind of old I thought. I was wondering; is there any concrete information about wether or not Dark Troopers will fly in the Mod?
I am almost certain we can get flying enemies working. We will be using the jetpack mod code to acheive this.

Quote:
8. The gravity and jumping seemed alittle different to me than what I was used to in JO. Has anything been tweaked (to make it more like DF) in that regard? Maybe the jumping sound effects are playing tricks on me .
I think the gravity was altered slightly, so you can jump further - about the same distance as Dark Forces.

Quote:
9. And lastly, are there any plans for a new demo to be release anytime soon? Secret Base is great and all, but it's such a short level...
No plans for a new demo, at least not at this stage. You are guaranteed several in-game trailers though, most likely in the Summer. You can expect a patch for the demo in a couple of weeks - nothing hugely special, the main update will be the new Kyle model. I wouldn't say "no" for sure though, on another demo

Hope all that answers your questions.



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Old 04-07-2003, 04:28 PM   #3
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About the limited quicksaves idea. PLEASE don't do that.
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Old 04-07-2003, 08:14 PM   #4
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Just an idea...

Gamers these days, sheesh, they're never up for a challenge.



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Old 04-07-2003, 08:50 PM   #5
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A challenge can always turn into SM
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Old 04-07-2003, 10:09 PM   #6
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Thanks alot for all the answers!

Everything sounds great so far! I just hope too much isn't changed on the Detention level... That was my all time favorite mission, but from what I've seen so far, I'm sure you guys can pull it off without losing the Dark Forces authenticity.

BTW, I did read through all that you said about the SDK, and I admit that I lost you there... But I'm glad that the coders are still able to get everything done that they wanted to, even without a true SP SDK.

Personally, I think you guys should go either with full Quicksaving, or fully with the Dark Forces system. Unless the game is made drastically harder than the original, I don't think the life system would be that difficult on the players .

And one more question if you don't mind... What is the progress on the Phase 2 and 3 Dark Trooper models... and when do you think we might get a glimpse of one?

Also, is the Phase 1 Dark Trooper that we see in the screenshots the one which will be in the final mod, or is it undergoing changes? I'm just asking since, while I think the the Phase 1 trooper looks great, it doesn't really look like (to me) the old Phase 1 of DFs... Maybe the old graphics are playing tricks on me though, but the dark troopers face seems to look more like this and less like ... I could be wrong though.

I can't wait to fight a Dark Trooper again . I'm actually anticipating this mod as eagerly as Jedi Academy!
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Old 04-07-2003, 10:32 PM   #7
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Personally, I like the look of the new phase 1, but I do think it would look really slick with a metalic shader to make it look more reflective. Currently it looks very flate grey, which I think looks more like plastic then the steal look of the original.


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Old 04-08-2003, 08:01 AM   #8
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Heh, you'll be pleased to know that the mesh for the Dark Trooper has undergone some big changes. As has the skin

Having said that, the version in the logo looks far better in game - you just have to see it. Hopefully I'll have some screens soon of the updated DT Phase 1. In the mean time, here are some skin reflection/chrome tests:



We are thinking of having some brand new DTs, looking like the top picture, older ones would look slightly more warn, like the pictures a bit further down.

Corto (the modeller responsible for the DT) will get to work on the Phase 2 after he's finished with the DT1. We made a pact a while back that we wouldn't show any pictures of any DT other than the Phase 1 However, perhaps in a trailer you could get a glimpse



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Old 04-08-2003, 04:34 PM   #9
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Like Silent_Thunder I thought the DT Phase I looked a little odd. I always got the impression from the original game that it was a prototype model, rough around the edges, the bare bones of the next phase. The model here just looks too sleek and smooth.

A limited quicksave sounds good to me. It'd certainly keep the challenge up while not making it near impossible to finish the levels.

About the Wired Lamp code, I thought they stopped working on the co-op because they couldn't get enough enemies into the updated MP. Or was that only with multiple players?

Another thing I've been thinking about: a lot of the levels in DF are very long by modern standards. Think of Fest, Imperial City, and Arc Hammer in particular. Most levels of that sort of length are split into several levels to save on slowdown, loading, and generally breaking up play into nicely sized chunks. Are you going to make all the levels continuous plays, or will you break them up? An example would be splitting up Fest into the canyon areas and the infiltration of the base hidden there. It'd probably make gameplay more enjoyable and improve performance issues. You could probably even travel backwards and forwards between areas; I heard recently there was a way of doing that (although enemies do respawn).
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Old 04-08-2003, 10:11 PM   #10
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Wow, you're right, that Dark Trooper in the screen shots DOES look much better! Especially the top one!

But let me get this straight, when you said you're going to be remaking the "mesh" of the Phase 1, does that mean that we're going to see a new model with a different shape or does it mean something else?

I think I kind of pinpointed what I thought looked different in the phase 1 in the Mod: As I said before, the eyes seems too 'sad' unlike the 'angry' eyes of the DF DT1... if you know what I mean . Also, the 'bone' right underneath the neck on the phase 1, the clavicle, goes straight across on the mod Dark Trooper. On the one in Dark Forces it dips down into the sternum like on humans. Also, the head is too big in comparision to the Dark Forces phase 1 I thought. Those are just minor things I noticed, and I don't expect everything to look identical. With those reflections it looks great so far!

But we have to wait till summer (first trailer?) to see our first look at a phase 2?

Oh well, I'm sure it will be worth the wait!
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Old 04-09-2003, 07:35 AM   #11
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The "mesh" is the model. And we are not remaking it, just modifying it.

Basically, Corto thought he'd finished it, to all intents and purposes he had, but then we managed to get our hands on some DT Phase 1 concept art - ie. exactly how the Phase 1 was supposed to look. Unfortunately, before you ask, I'm not allowed to show you that. Anyway, the Phase 1 is being modified to better represent the original vision.



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Old 04-10-2003, 03:22 PM   #12
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couldn't you post the link to Justin Chin's site?


Producer - The Dark Forces MOD for Jedi Academy
http://darkforces.jediknight.net/
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Old 04-10-2003, 04:56 PM   #13
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I thought I read every thing there was to know from Chin, like the origin of the weapon names and Katarn being a nanimal in SW and there being no time to change it and.....

Link please?!



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Old 04-11-2003, 08:06 AM   #14
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Sorry Dave, the impression you gave me a while back was to NOT post these pics around. Perhaps you meant uploading the images to the site, rather than the actual link...

Anyway, for those interested, Justin Chin's website is here:

http://www.monsterrocket.com

Goto the "vis" section to look at DF and JK concept art



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Old 04-14-2003, 02:53 AM   #15
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Wow, I haven't checked out this mod in a while, but there's a great deal of info in this post
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Old 04-14-2003, 07:02 PM   #16
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About the shaders, (ur gonna hate me for this, cos it might be a little time consuming)

spoiler:
Gromas mines: Have the DT1 shaded a little orange/brown to reflect dust from the mining equipment


spoiler:
Ice Base, use the regular ones


spoiler:
Executor, Arc Hammer and Coruscant, use the REALLY shiny ones, because lets face it its Imperial Centre. Shiny..wooo


(can anyone suggest uses for the black ones???)


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