Author Topic: STICKIED: Possible Games  (Read 14059 times)

andrewj

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STICKIED: Possible Games
« on: May 12, 2010, 08:07:22 AM »
Here is some thoughts on games which OBLIGE may and may not support in the future, and the reasons behind it.

DEFINITELY SUPPORTED

DOOM 1, 2 : works very well

FINAL DOOM : working well, could use their new textures some more

HERETIC : currently non-functional, but won't be hard to get it working again

FREEDOOM : is not a selectable game in Oblige, but since it is compatible with the DOOM games you can just build maps for DOOM and they should work fine in FreeDoom.

QUITE LIKELY

HEXEN : it was working in the distant past, but needs a lot of work to revive it, and need to support Hexen format prefabs.

HARMONY : a nice-looking free game that uses the DOOM engine.  A basic definition was written long ago, it would need a lot more work though.

HACX : another free games using the DOOM engine.  There was some support for it already, but it would need a major update.

CHEX QUEST 3 : a more expanded game than the original two, which uses ZDoom, and hence may require Hexen format to achieve things seen within the game.  I personally have never played this.  Enhas made a start on a game definition but it needs a lot more work.

POSSIBILITIES...

QUAKE 1, 2 : these were once supported (in V4), but Oblige has changed the way it handle prefabs since then, storing them in WAD files for easier editing.  But wad files are too limiting for Quake, so would need another way to create prefabs (ideally could load them from ".map" files).

DUKE NUKEM 3D : a cool game that I like and have recently added support for the map format to the EXE (C++) code, although it is not complete yet. It currently has a minimal game definition and needs a lot of work, including adding information on monsters, weapons and pickups which are currently missing.

STRIFE : another game I haven't played.  Uses the same map format as DOOM, hence only needs a game definition file.  From what I've heard, this game has an involved plot and I'm not sure the gameplay is suitable for random generation.  Engine has a hub system and that will need extra logic (like Hexen).

AMULETS & ARMOR : this is a RPG which uses the same level format as DOOM.  I don't know if the engine crashes if too many lines or sectors are visible, which would be a deal-breaker for Oblige.

HALF LIFE : the original Half Life uses an engine called "GoldSrc" which is based on the Quake engine.  Hence if Quake get supported again (with the features mentioned above), then supporting this should at least be possible.  One concern is having to create the AI pathfinding nodes.

DARK FORCES : I played the demo and thought it was pretty cool.  I've also read a paper where somebody used this game as the target of a random map generator.  The map format seems similar to Build, so I think generating maps from OBLIGE should be feasible.  I don't know if the engine has limits (e.g. too many visible sectors crashing the game), as that would be showstopper, unless a better engine was the target.

BLOOD and SHADOW WARRIOR : I have never played these games, however they both use the Build engine, and hence if/when Duke Nukem 3D support reaches a decent state then it should be possible to create maps for these games.  I have no idea whether their gameplay is suitable for random generation.

HEXEN 2 : this uses the same map format as normal QUAKE, so if that game is supported then this will "merely" need a game definition for all the monsters, weapons, pickups and themes.  I have only played the demo, so I'm not sure yet if the gameplay is fully suited to random generation.

SERIOUS SAM 1 : The recent release of the SS1 engine source code means that supporting that game is now a lot more feasible.  It would require heaps of work though.

VERY UNLIKELY

In general, anything released after the year 2000 or so is too modern for Oblige, the map formats become too complicated for Oblige to create them.

WOLF3D : Wolfenstein-3D was a game I played a lot when younger.  It was briefly supported in one of the V2 releases, though it did a pretty poor job, but at least the game definitions (monsters, weapons etc) are there.  The map format is extremely limited and I find I get nauseous when playing this game nowadays.

BLAKESTONE and ROTT : these won't be supported for the same reasons as Wolf3D : the architecture is too limited (would need separate logic in the Lua code for it), and I don't enjoy playing them.

CHEX QUEST 1, 2 : I feel that these are obsolete with the existence of Chex Quest 3 (which contains all the resources from the original games).

MARATHON 1, 2 : these games are completely free (you can legally download them), so I'd like to support them even though I don't enjoy playing them.  However the original engine has low render limits which crash the game if overflowed, as well as a limit on number of objects, and these limits have not been removed by the AlephOne developers.

QUAKE 3 ARENA : this game, and the completely free version called Open Arena (which I have played a lot), are multiplayer games.  These kinds of maps (Deathmatch and CTF) are less suitable for random generation, an opinion I explain in the OBLIGE FAQ, so I don't plan to support them at this time.  Supporting the format may be possible (via q3map2), though the logic for using .map files as prefabs is not there yet.  Hence any other games using the Quake 3 engine is also excluded.

HERETIC 2 : this Raven game apparently uses the Quake II map format, assuming that is true (or any difference is small) then supporting it would be possible.  The game has a lot of story to it, so I wonder if this game is suitable for random generation.

THIEF : I haven't played this game, but did a bit of research on it.  There is no source code to this game, which makes it much harder to create maps for it (though the OpenDarkEngine project may be helpful).  I don't even know if it's possible.  Also the engine may be too limited, perhaps crashing if too many areas are visible, and that is a show-stopper for Oblige support.  Lastly I'm not sure the nature of the gameplay, where you must often sneak around and prevent yourself from being seen, is suitable for random generation -- it would definitely require a lot of extra logic.

CUBE : this is a freeware multiplayer game.  The map format is a bit limited (using a grid of 16x16 blocks), but  could be doable.  While it does have monsters, there is too much missing in the engine to make decent single player levels: no doors, no keys, not even a way to progress from one level to the next (AFAIK).  The successor SAUERBRATEN might be more suitable....

DOOM 3 : this uses a .map format which is similar to Quake mapping, however the tools for building the maps are contained in the game EXE, and this is a show-stopper for Oblige (which would need stand-alone tools). 
« Last Edit: October 01, 2016, 05:55:42 AM by andrewj »

kmrblue1027

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Re: Possible Games
« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2010, 11:18:22 AM »
Well at least you have a plan  :). I really want to see Chex Quest 1,2,3 and Final Doom (Plutonia mostly). I would think making Final Doom would be a snap considering they are Doom II with different theams (you need to exile the Egyptian stuff to level 31 of TNT) other then that it would be easy. Chex Quest would be a lot tougher though.
Doom is like crack, but better for you.

Glaice

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Re: Possible Games
« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2010, 11:49:31 AM »
Half-Life RMG support is possible because someone has done this before with a program called Randmap, which obviously I was all over it and involved in making room prefabs work properly, atop a few of my own. I kept an unofficial mirror of it until my interest waned, which was a bit after the developer disappeared.

The same was with Half-Life 2 that had a program named HL2RMC, which I was all over during the peak development of it but it did not last as long because one day in 2006 the developer had a hard drive crash, losing all the data on it and thus redoing it from scratch. After a while, the page for it just vanished and the updates on the new version from the developer just stopped, which also made me sad for a program with such potential to give almost endless replayability to HL2.

Also the big thing about these two engines is that you can make room over room and all that, which is nice but when the programs came to the spot that it needed lighting and VIS done, it took quite a bit of time (unless using minimal lighting and VIS quality), anywhere from 10 to 40 minutes depending on the complexity of the levels.

deskx

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Re: Possible Games
« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2010, 03:00:11 PM »
http://wiki.beyondunreal.com/Legacy:T3D_File

Ever thought about Unreal support? The T3D format is very simple and people could just open Unreal Editor, import the T3D, build and save.

andrewj

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Re: Possible Games
« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2010, 07:52:12 PM »
HL2 would be in that "too modern" category, as it probably wouldn't work on my quite old computer.

Unreal (or UT) is not a game I own or have played.  If the map format was similar enough to Quake or Quake2 then it may be possible -- I would need good documentation on the format.

Realistically, I am already stretched with just the Definitely Supported games, and probably should concentrate on them for a while and make them decent, instead of having the bare minimum for a large range of games.  We'll see what happens :D

raven5

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Re: Possible Games
« Reply #5 on: May 13, 2010, 09:11:30 AM »
I like to see Heretic, HeXen, HeXen II, Heretic II
HeXen II: Portal of praevus - need a little more logic[official mission pack]

deskx

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Re: Possible Games
« Reply #6 on: May 13, 2010, 10:38:46 AM »
Quote
I would need good documentation on the format.

I just provided:

http://wiki.beyondunreal.com/Legacy:T3D_File

deskx

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Re: Possible Games
« Reply #7 on: May 13, 2010, 10:42:09 AM »

eurasianbadger

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Re: Possible Games
« Reply #8 on: May 13, 2010, 12:24:01 PM »
Quote from: "ajapted"
Here is some thoughts on games which OBLIGE may and may not support in the future, and the reasons behind it.

QUITE LIKELY

HEXEN : demand for this has been low, I don't recall anybody asking about it since V3 (though I could have forgotten).  Currently it needs work in the EXE (C++) code to support it, as the map format is different from Doom.  Hexen was supported in V2 and the game definition exists but it needs new theme definitions.  Also needed is new logic to support its hub system.

Hexen is tricky for a couple of reasons:

- unlike DooM and Heretic, Hexen has linear, heavily scripted progression. Levels in DooM and Heretic generally offer more freedom of movement, they are more arena-like. Oldschool level design. Levels of Hexen are more like those in modern FPS games, where you progress from room to room and watch fancy scripted scenes.
- lots puzzle items with arbitrary uses. You take Flame Mask from one level and use it in ice level to melt ice. You collect gears and put them in a clock tower. You collect gemstone planets and put them in sockets in walls.
- the two above mean that you could generate Hexen levels in the same way as you do with Heretic and Doom, but they would be more like DooM and Heretic levels than Hexen levels.
- I hate to admit it, but lots of Hexen revolves around finding hidden switches and passages, breaking stained glass etc. Hexen is basically filled with mandatory secret areas - and this is probably one of main reasons the game wasn't very popular. Generating secret areas randomly is hard.

Having said the above, I think it would be wisest to treat Hexen level generation as a variation of Heretic. Heretic with jumping, other weapons and items. "Bottomless" pits instead of lava. ]You're not going to be able to reliably generate item puzzles or secret areas. Hexen does have many fans because of its great atmosphere. Just check a swamp level like Darkmere.  Monsters slowly respawn by default, so you're almost never safe. Also combat is significantly different from Heretic and Doom - lots of melee, you run out of ammo more often yet even weakest weapons are much more useful than those in DooM/Heretic. I would forget hubs - without handcrafted puzzles (which were never particularly fun), putting right item into right spot, hubs don't add much. They mostly increase the amount of backtracking you have to do.

Quote
HEXEN II : this uses the same map format as normal QUAKE, hence it mainly needs a game definition for all the monsters, weapons, pickups and themes.  The texture wad file can be downloaded from Raven's website, so users don't need to create it themselves (like Quake), which is a bonus.  I have only played the demo, so I'm not sure yet if the gameplay is fully suited to random generation.

Gameplay wise, almost everything I said about Hexen applies to Hexen II. Hexen II is even more scripted, less abstract (less dungeons), has more handcrafted stuff. Aside from different weapons, items and monsters the main change is addition of "room over room" and swimmable water.

Quote
THIEF : I haven't played this game, but did a bit of research on it.  There is no source code to this game, which makes it much harder to create maps for it (though the OpenDarkEngine project may be helpful).  I don't even know if it's possible.  Also the engine may be too limited, perhaps crashing if too many areas are visible, and that is a show-stopper for Oblige support.  Lastly I'm not sure the nature of the gameplay, where you must often sneak around and prevent yourself from being seen, is suitable for random generation -- it would definitely require a lot of extra logic.

While you can dumb down Hexen levels a little and treat it like just another shooter game (combat is still fun), you can't do the same for Thief. Thief has carefully designed levels, guards patroling always on the same routes, and player has to sneak between them while avoiding being seen. Also big part of Thief's charm is good story, notes and letters you find, overheard conversations, eavesdropping. Story in Hexen2 and especially Hexen is forgettable and the game can be enjoyed for the atmosphere and combat. Thief without story would feel castrated.

Quote
SERIOUS SAM 1, 2 : I own the second game and quite enjoy it.  However there is no source code for these games, and I cannot find any documentation about the map format, hence it's not possible to write the code to produce maps for these games.

It's unfortunate the source code is not available, because I think it would make a good candidate. Gameplay is fun enough even without story, right ?

Painkiller would probably be great for random level generation, but source code is not available.

b0rsuk

andrewj

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Re: Possible Games
« Reply #9 on: May 13, 2010, 08:15:53 PM »
deskx: is T3D the format the engine actually loads? i.e. if you unpack the data that comes with the game, do you get files called something like MAP1.T3D, MAP2.T3D etc?

The text format is very verbose, I'd be a bit surprised if it wasn't compiled to a binary representation, or at least another file or two to contain visibility or lighting information.

Borsuk: I agree with most of what you said.

I think HEXEN needs to use the hub system, as the alternative (finish one map, start next) is not possible.  So you end up making what amounts to one huge map which is split into separate parts (STRIFE would probably be similar).  I don't think the backtracking is too bad, even in DOOM you are backtracking once you find the key to a door.

doomaniac

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Re: Possible Games
« Reply #10 on: May 13, 2010, 08:46:25 PM »
I wait for Hexen support since the first version!And the Final Doom also in this version!

You could make a boss arena for heretic like the ultimate doom and doom 2.

deskx

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Re: Possible Games
« Reply #11 on: May 14, 2010, 04:11:17 AM »
Quote
destx: is T3D the format the engine actually loads? i.e. if you unpack the data that comes with the game, do you get files called something like MAP1.T3D, MAP2.T3D etc?

The text format is very verbose, I'd be a bit surprised if it wasn't compiled to a binary representation, or at least another file or two to contain visibility or lighting information.

There is no way to compile a T3D to a Unreal map directly. The users import T3D in UED, build and save the map.

andrewj

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Re: Possible Games
« Reply #12 on: May 14, 2010, 07:09:12 AM »
Generating maps directly in the engine's format is the way I'd want to do it, for the same reasons as Quake:

  • convenience to users (most people wouldn't know how to use the compiling tools)
  • speed (I can take advantage of OBLIGE's grid to compile visibility info much faster than it would normally take)
  • robustness (the way OBLIGE's CSG works means that leaks never happen)
  • flexibility (I'm not limited by what the tools can do, e.g. I can implement my own lighting algorithms)

Quote from: "doomaniac"
You could make a boss arena for heretic like the ultimate doom and doom 2
Yeah somebody needs to make them. Perhaps you could load up Doom Builder and give it a go?

kmrblue1027

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Re: Possible Games
« Reply #13 on: May 14, 2010, 11:15:07 AM »
If it's all right with you Andrew I'm going to attempt to make an Icon of Sin map if it will be included in Oblige. It may take awhile for me to complete though.
Doom is like crack, but better for you.

leileilol

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Re: Possible Games
« Reply #14 on: May 14, 2010, 06:32:37 PM »
Amulets & Armor could be a possible candidate. It uses Doom format (really!) with separate lumps outside the .MAP (pwad) file to define thing generators and sectors with switchable/dynamic lights (i.e. a door opening lightens a dark room's sector).  Unfortunately there's no legal way to obtain the game (not since May 97 or so) as it's a very obscure one, and all the things aren't even discovered completely yet.

But think... OMG! RANDOM DUNGEON QUEST GENERATION!!!!
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