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Reputation: 1006 My posts turn threads into gold
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The height of gaming excitement (188 posts)
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My Information

29 years old
October 21, 1989
Male Male

Contact Information

Skype  max.ylitalo

Topics I've Started

  1. Tile offset tool

    01 May 2018 - 09:59 AM

    Are you working with higher resolution art and wanted something, just anything to do the offsets with?
    Have I got "Just desperately anything for you:

    This is a rather hacky tool that's been put together with qb64 (the best programming language in the world!!), so don't expect 60fps interactivity if the tiles get larger.
    Motivation was mainly to get a quick tool for Cage to work with for Ion Maiden's enemies & art, and he wanted me to release this so here you go!

    (includes some Duke3D tiles for demonstration purposes only, found in shareware)

    What it does is that it lets you specify a range of tiles, i.e. 4 turning animations & walking.
    Then with arrow keys you can cycle between tile frames and numpad lets you offset each frame individually.
    i.e. up/down would cycle walking animations and left/right would rotate the sprite.
    When you're done, press W to write it to a rather eduke32 friendly offset.txt file that can be loaded in to eduke32 with minimal effort (as tilefromtexture).

    Numpad 4/6/8/2 -- Move around, numpad 5 will reset offset to 0,0 on current tile.
    Arrows -- Move around the tile array that you have configured
    Numpad +/- -- Change brightness of the background if it's too dark
    Mouse & click -- Another method of moving tiles around, expect smooth interactivity FPS here!
    W -- Save offsets (offset TXT)
    L -- Load offsets (offset TXT)
    U -- Reloads config TXT under /tiles/ & ALSO resets coordinates to default values. You can still load old coords in as long as the dimensions match.

    Don't expect any support for this one, but I think it gets the job done.
    No known major issues but I haven't tested this for more than what I did when making this. Cage seems to be happy with it.

    Visual guidance:
  2. 'Return to ruins' A new Powerslave / Exhumed mini episode AND mapping documentation

    23 December 2016 - 01:24 PM

    Posted Image
    Powerslave / Exhumed - PC A mapping tribute

    What the hell?

    Some might have seen oasiz / methy / daedolon spread around information about PS/EX maps in one of the threads earlier 2016.

    What initially started as a curiosity project to quickly see if mapping was possible at all with PS/EX, rather quickly evolved into a documentation effort and later on to a small map pack along with some never before utilized features of the game.

    As far as we know, there is only one custom map by LAW done before this one, which was more of a proof of concept.
    So for the first time, there is proper mapping documentation for this game and some example maps to go with for any interested modder out there.

    Shut up and take me to your leader!

    And some youtube videos of the maps, behind a spoiler.

    The project

    What was discovered rather quickly is that PS/EX uses the same map format as TekWar (v6) with some minor differences. Which means that the TekWar's build can open the map files natively.
    Upon initial inspection the maps look very similar to any build engine type maps, major findings being that the player scale is different and shading had some isses.
    Shading turned out to be a rather unique first quirk of the game, instead of typical 32 shades, you have 64 shade steps instead.
    This shading issue has been offset when loading the palette, however it only looks correct on shade 0 and any +- shade is visually just a half of what it is ingame.. A small annoyance but nothing too bad.
    One other hack that had to be done is that the normal black value for editor background is close to white, this had to be manually stabbed in as basepal and that's why you have an extra 256 byte RMP file for it.

    For the first few days we utilized the TekWar build editor that I compiled some time back and JonoF's custom 640x480 version.
    Documentation of the game proceeded systematically by grinding tag by tag and effect by effect with trial & error (My approach)
    While Methy / Daedolon went through the stock maps and documented everything they found (esp. level specific ones). This resumed for a week/two.

    Anyway.. once a toolchain was done to CONV/BACKMAP stuff properly, this was pretty quick..
    After around 2-3 weeks in, we had mapster32 support implemented in with all the required hacks to get around and this is when I decided to mess around and see how the engine would react to slopes.
    TekWar and it's build doesn't support these so it was safe to assume that this v6 is from the same branch, only to discover that engine actually rendered them!

    Posted Image

    Ok.. now this is pretty cool, that means that pyramids / sand and whatnot can be done... damn! So much wasted potential.
    Tekwar and exhumed still share v6 build but slopes simply used the groudraw attributes as they replaced it, thus the map format is compatible but you'll get glitchy groudraw instead of slopes with TekWar.
    After wasting about 60min on testing stuff around, I inserted some slopes to the first map just to see what was wasted..

    Posted Image

    OK! Got about half of the common effects documented by this point and we already discovered slopes, discovered that there is very little use of transparency in stock maps (only ~2 instances) and other more unused advanced effects and combinations of those..
    soon the ideas started flooding in and we decided that this needs to be demonstrated. Loads of potential.
    After some time, we landed on a 3+1 map pack (everyone does one map + 1 collab. boss map).

    We quickly sketched together a friendlier edit package with stabbed dosbox/mapster32 configs to auto launch the game for playtesting at the location you're in (mapster32 -> dosbox).
    This involved automatic BACKMAP to playtest / gettig rid of excess configs or the game wont start quickly / uploading to gdrive / etc..

    I sketched mine quickly with paint.net (I love doing designs this way) on a lowres image, looks like this:

    Posted Image

    Dark green on the left would be minecart (Something I had to scale down a lot later) and it would loop back like it does in final map.
    All of this was laid out here before I even did the first sector. Pretty much all of the major ideas you see in the final map got already visualized here.
    Unfortunately I had to add a bunch of visual blocks, thanks to the slopes bugging out and other game play / performance issues.. Didn't help that enemies can spot you across the map.

    Methy was also working on his map during this and around early summer we both had working maps and Daedolon had started his.
    Unfortunately busy things got in the way and stuff we had planned for the first map didn't make it in time.
    However the collaboration did live on with the boss map, Daedolon did the round arena base, Methy added in some effects and the first arena that you encounter.
    I made a full visual pass on daedolon's area and tweaks in the first one, plus helped to add some effects in. This got done around august and we decided that everything is feature ready for first public release aside from the first map and some game engine tweaks.

    In the end, we combined some new tricks and some nasty ones too to get what we want, for example I discovered a way to make exploding walls based on a touchplate.. Looks pretty cool and I wonder why they didn't make anything like that as an effect..

    We are proud to be able to document this game and it has some really weird oddities noted in the "Mapping tips" column.

    The documentation also ships with a bonus map that all the common effects and game play elements laid out, along with a reference document.
    You can easily find all sorts of ready effects here !

    I have to admit at this point that I haven't completed a single level of exhumed so I have no clue what the balancing is supposed to be, approached this game "blind" :)
    Thanks to Methy for telling me "No, that's actually a boss door texture!" and suggesting changes / introducing me to new stuff
  3. Gamma compensation reference map

    01 March 2015 - 01:35 PM

    Posted Image

    I even made a cool logo and everything.

    What this map is some rough reference for differences I observed between panels, It's not meant to be a definite guide (yet) but should help you on how to shade your map so that it's not too dark.

    One thing I noticed while making Slum noir was that how different my map looked between home IPS screen and my crummy dell laptop, including other laptops after that.
    I used low shades quite a lot since PAL21 or PAL24 need to be quite dim in order to make things more rusty instead of bloody.
    Problems with things getting really dark start to surface when using different screens all the time and that can even make some sections almost painful to play.

    Ok !

    So there are two areas: E1L1 copypasta (shading copied per area/texture) and "barely visible" references.
    - E1L1 is split in to 5+1 shade levels, with one being a direct copy of some basic E1L1 shading levels.
    - Shading levels all have whole area skewed by whatever value it says.
    - "Laptop" has manual skewing that has some overbright greys and such, making the map look weird on my IPS but closest to what a typical poor laptop display/panel looks like
    - "Laptop" vs. Normal has a rough 50/50 split between normal E1L1 shade and above mentioned laptop area, shows how different some areas look like.

    Reference areas:
    - IPS barely visible = when standing on the line, I can see all three textures without too much trouble, still very dark, able to go about 1-2 shade levels lower but that's right at the treshold then.
    -> next one has roughly what this looks like on my 24" ~07 HP screen, non-IPS. Already sort of compressing the black levels, 24" ~07 samsung has similar results. (probably same panel).
    -> third one has what the shade looks like on my laptop roughly, really burned grey levels and red is less visible.
    - Very last one, "barely visible" reference on shitty panel / laptop. I have to step on that blue line to get roughly what I on the IPS reference and the greys are still a bit dark since laptop compresses those quite a lot so I had to make them pretty dark.

    I'd love to have some additional samples to see how things change between screens that other people have.
    And If people want to contribute some other example map sections or ideas then feel free to suggest.

    What I've seen is that polymost makes things quite a lot better since the visibility goes trough full color instead of just 8bit, making darker areas easier to see.
    So in case it wasn't clear, this was meant for 8-bit ;)

    For clarity, IPS is not the most expensive one, being a Crossover 27Q 27" korean IPS, still does things well.

    While still not 100% reliable reference map, if you think that your map is darker than some of those references, might want to up the overall brightness a bit or do what E1L1 did for dark areas: light switches.. and lots of them!
  4. Duke3D Build Porn

    03 December 2014 - 03:11 PM

    Posted Image

    Please keep any "cool" "nice" posts out of here, if you want to comment then use the other thread !

    Idea is to have every post contribute something new. This way every post would be 100% content and no skimming between all the discussion. Thanks! : )


    What this is all about?

    By now Duke mappers know that the Duke3D's build engine is incredibly flexible and even today new use cases for various effects get found.
    While it lacks precise control over effects, people still find weird combinations and concepts that nobody has bothered to do before!

    So you've mapped for duke?
    By any chance have you made cool effect prototypes but never found any use for it?
    You know some tricks to go around limitations with not just the effects but architecture itself ?
    Want to share it with the world and go behind on how it was made ?
    Here is the place to showcase that baby !

    This thread is meant to serve as inspiration for effects, gimmicks or other more or less impressive things that can be accomplished with Duke3D.
    Please avoid posting well known effects that you'd typically find in a 3DR map, instead it can be a wicked combination or clever use of existing things to create something unique!
    Effect doesn't have to be perfect and can contain slight glitches or oddities as it can inspire further development.

    If you remix an existing effect then feel free to share it as long as it has some actual improvements from the original one, replacing brickwalls with marble and adding a maskwall won't do but if it does unexpected things or combines effects in a new way then go ahead!
    Goal is to give proper credit, educate, inspire and index everything nice and tidy.

    Each post is to include:
    - Title / name for effect
    - Brief intro
    - video or animation, this is a must!
    - Details on how it was done
    - Provide some example map as well, doesn't have to be fancy but should show the effect in question.

    The following post is how we fly, please follow the lead of that guy.

    Another example code and post:

    28 August 2014 - 03:46 AM

    [Logo with desert chrome and lasers]

    Posted Image
    More samples (D3D + LD)


    Disclaimer: This is released as-is, it works really well with the stuff I have tried so far but I haven't tested Eduke32 limit removal that well as I added it just recently, from a quick glance, slum noir rendered without any trouble.

    Some might have seen this being posted in the "what are you working on" thread.
    Instead of sitting on it for years before releasing, I decided to release it now.
    I hope that someone will find this useful or even take the idea further.

    == TL;DR version ==

    -> Requires windows
    -> Eats in '.map' files from Duke3D and Lameduke, possibly other versions as well.
    -> Outputs a '.html' that has SVG in it.
    -> Able to do some basic comparisons between two .map files
    -> All this with a pretty UI that belongs to the 80s!

    == In more detail ==

    "Behind the scenes"
    => Conversion between versions relies on CONVMAPx binaries being on the same directory as svgmap itself.
    => svagtemp.map gets output and used for reading and possible conversions.
    - Convmap © Ken Silverman

    == Usage ==

    Upong starting, it will ask for a .map file.
    => Give the name without the .map extension, 'myhouse.map' would be 'myhouse'

    It will ask you for another map file for comparison
    IF you want to compare => enter another map file in here, same way as above
    IF you don't want to => simply press enter without entering anything'

    Question for extra parameters
    => <space> will get you to the extra params screen
    => <enter> will speed up skipping this part

    ---> (if using extra params)

    Offsets: How much should the map#1 be offset compared to map#2 when comparing.
    This is useful if the layout was shifted slightly between versions and you want to overlap them.

    Scaling: Apply some sort of scaling to the canvas, not perfect but in some cases it makes it a lot better.

    Every option is essentially a combination of auto-scaling / automatic offsets and manual tuning with offsets.

    You will begin to see bunch of fancy matrix-like stuff that is mainly a debug output showing on what is being done.
    After this it will auto-quit and you will end up with 'mapname.html' i.e. 'myhouse.html'

    Try to drag&drop the .html to any modern browse, behold!

    == Other ==

    IRC: oasiz @freenode / ircnet / quakenet

    I would gladly help if someone wants to make a better version of this, preferably an online version that is
    cross-platform and more user friendly.

    Some updates on this can of course be done.
    Suggestions are welcome but I won't start applying textures as I have no idea how to approach that problem.
    Maybe sprites at most.


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