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User Name: tinman Plan Last Modified: 12/14/1999 10:01:20 PST
Real Name: Tinman (Yes, dammit, that is my real name!)
Job: humble programmer
Project: Starsiege: Tribes2
Monday, December 13, '99
This fall has been a bit of a rollercoaster ride, so I thought it was about
time to do another update. The cancellation of Tribes: Extreme was of course,
dissappointing. Being part of the AI team, we had some great successes with the
bots - there were some levels I worked on and playtested for hours, and am very
sorry to see that they can't be released. But thinking of what we'll be able to
do with an extra couple of months - I can't wait. Tribes 2 will leave everyone
with no doubt that concentrating our efforts on one product, *without* having to
cut features because of such "Extreme" time constraints, will pay off bigtime!!!
On a happier note, an improved Hunters1.3 is now available!
The highlights are:
- Three new missions have been added. PandorasBox by Matt "Ptavv" Timlin,
ValleyOfTheWolf by Tyler "MITTENMAN" Sten, and PathOfDaggers by Eric "Griffon" Soulvie.
Much thanks guys - especially for how much work I made you all do until your
levels got the golden "thumbs up"!
- The official website for Hunters has moved to http://www.tribesplayers.com/tribesplayers/hunters
Much thanks to "Starlord" and "Schnoz" from Datumplane (R.I.P.) for all their
hard work and support!
- When a person has picked up enough flags to break the current record for
that map, an announcement goes out to everyone. Hopefully this will paint
a bullseye on him and make setting a record just a bit harder! :)
- A minor bug fix: for people who call: remoteEval(2048, HuntersFindTarget);
to find a target, if they set themselves an alternate waypoint, it would be
overwritten once the previous target picked up another flag. A new function
has been written to cancel the auto-targetting.
Execute: remoteEval(2048, HuntersCancelTarget);
One final thing while I'm in the mood to ramble. I'm very proud of a successful
subterfuge I pulled on my buddy "Bacchus". He ICQ'd me one night asking for some
scripting help. I send him back a script which didn't quite work on his end, so
he sends me his autoexec.cs file for me to verify that he copied it correctly,
or to make any necessary changes. It was at this point that I noticed he also had
a set of custom chat messages - things like "Can someone fix our Generator?" or
"D'oh - I just got killed!". Well, I (tried to) fix his scripting problem, and sent
him back an editted autoexec.cs. Unfortunately, the script still didn't work, but in the
middle of the next match he played, he found himself saying things like "Can someone
fix our Generator? Kidney Thief kicked our ass again!", and "D'oh - Kidney Thief just
killed me again - he's just too damn good!". Hehe sorry bud - couldn't resist! :)
Anyways - back to work for me. Thanks all, and since I probably won't have time to
update again this month/year/decade/century/millenium, have a Merry Christmas and A
Happy New Year!
Monday, August 30, '99
Another quick update from the world of Hunters - version 1.2 has been released!
available here as always. :)
- A bug in the voting to change mission has been fixed. (The one that causes people
to no longer drop a flag when they're killed.)
- Those annoying beacons that trip you up in corridors - they now exists underground!
- The spamming caused by someone running over a large amount of flags all at once
has been reduced.
- GREED mode!!! A new (votable) feature which requires a minimum number (default is 8)
of flags that a person must have before they can return them to the Nexus. This seems
to help especially in games with fewer people.
- HOARD mode!!! Another new (votable) feature. Anyone who's played on my server has
probably played against "Sooshie" - the guy who runs the auto-whine-about-lag script!
however, props are due - he suggested a "winner takes all" game, which inspired this
mode. The HOARD period begins at 5 minutes left in the game, until 2 minutes left.
During this period, *no* flag returns to the Nexus are permitted at all. Just watch
the jackpots build!
Thanks again all... Happy hunting!
Friday, August 20, '99
Just a quick message... The original Quake Headhunters' authors have contacted me,
and both were very happy about my efforts in bringing their awesome style of play into
the world of Tribes! (Whew... good thing I didn't screw it up!) Much thanks again
to Charlie "Seedload" Zimmerman and Monsto "Dreighton" Brukes! You rule!
P.S. ...and yes, a free copy of Tribes is on its way! :)
Thursday, August 19, '99
Whew! Another busy week. Where to start... well first off, Hunters v1.1 is now
available - from the Official Hunters Website! Check it out:
Much thanks to James and Schnoz over at datumplane, they've been working hard, and
the site looks great!!!
Version 1.1 has a few bug fixes (what?!! bugs in *my* code?), and few new features:
- The funk that happened when switching from Hunters to another mission type
(like CTF) has been cleaned up. This includes restoring the team names, restoring
the team damage voting, that weird message in red that shows up when you switch
teams, and the banned inventory items have been reset.
- Ever notice that once in awhile, your firing is off in "UndergroundTesting"? Well,
it's fixed. Don't ask, just be happy :)
- Record flag returns are now persisted out to a file, and a new kind of record, the
"Honorary Greed Award" is given to whoever *dropped* the most flags during that
- A few other odds and ends - capture messages of 5 or more appear in red now, inv
stations are named...
I've also had a few friends send some contributed maps. Matt "Ptavv" Timlin sent in a
modified version of Bloody vengeance, called "PavillionOfTheGods". It's currently
running on my server "Kidney Thief's Domain", and is well worth checking out!
As I said, it's been a busy week. TribesCon was last weekend. Heh, no more "your an LPB"
excuses! The weekend was a lot of fun. Unofficially, I'm going to deny the rumors that
"Reckless Abandon" worked the composite dev team *severly* in an exhibition match.
(Umm... they *really were* LPBs :)
We also *have* to mention that Steve "Presto" Eisner bought the dev team BEER! He's
working on some *seriously* cool modifications to his "Presto Pak", which we were able
to see. You think the original rocked...
What else... yes, Cornboy! is finally going. My liver can't take any more of his
goodbye parties, but the one last Sunday at Nailz' place was pretty intense! The next
day at work, my calendar already said Tuesday! D'oh!! See ya bud!
Whew! Well, back to Extreme!
Wednesday, August 11, '99
YARD SALE!!! That's right! Hunters is now available! It's been a long
couple of weeks, but its finally here:
Download Hunters Now!
And to further entice, Eric "Balefire" Lanz's Rabbit is right behind me!
Download Rabbit Now!
- We now have 8 maps for Hunters - including an authentic Cornboy! map.
Much thanks Scott! It's called "NightTrain" and it rocks!
- Record holders are now stored (until the server is restarted) for each
mission. Remember that time when 12 people all killed each other, and
and left you standing dazed in a field of 67 flags? Your legacy will
now live on!
- It seems I've finally decided on a freakin name for that place you return
the flags to. The "Nexus" (suggested by Blake Hutchins) seems to work.
Incidently, I've modified all maps to point to the Nexus in observer mode,
for those who are just starting out, or who can't find it.
- The guys from www.datumplane.com have kindly offered to do up
a "Hunters" website. I can't wait to see it! :)
- A client-side HUD for hunters might come in handy, although I'm sure
someone will beat me to the punch.
- "Team Hunters"?!! Well see... :)
- To the makers of Headhunters for Quake.
- To Balefire, for leading by example in his creation of Rabbit.
- To Cornboy! for his mission.
- To the rest of the Tribes dev team who's screaming and swearing up and down
the hall let me know the mission type is a success.
- To the faithful core of players who kept my server (Kidney Thief's Domain)
in constant use, and provided much valuable feedback.
- (in advance) to the guys from Datumplane.
- Especially to my Fiancee, Cristine, who had to put up with my tired grumpy
butt for the last few weeks.
Monday, August 2, '99
I am so *stoked* about the number of people who have checked out and
given me feedback on Hunters. Thanks also to BluesNews, Adrenaline
Vault, Planet Tribes, and anyone else who posted word of it today!
(To think I had no idea anyone *ever* read my .plan file!)
I've made some modifications (mostly in response to feedback) which I
thought I'd mention - let me know if they help or hinder:
- The biggest drawback is not being able to tell how many flags an opponent
is carrying. I've made an attempt with 2 changes - I've added a column
to the TAB menu, and, only a player carrying 5 or more flags has
a flag mounted on his back.
- Another helpful addition is a function to find out who currently has
the most flags, and to track that person with your compass. To use
this function, you must add a key binding to query the server.
To do this, edit your "configautoexec.cs", and add the lines:
bindCommand(keyboard0, make, control, "z", TO, "remoteEval(2048, HuntersFindTarget);");
This feature may prove too much, but for now it's nice to have a target.
- Several people have been "stashing" - finding a hiding place for their flags,
and then capping them all at the end for mega points. To discourage this
dropped flags will now disappear after 2 minutes.
- The "cacophony of sounds" as one person put it, has been toned down. The
pick up flag sound only plays when you're the one picking up a flag, and
the flag cap sound only plays when someone caps 5+ flags.
Again, thanks everyone, and happy Hunting!
Saturday, July 31, '99
It's 6:15am, do you know where my mind is? It's been a busy week.
Things are progressing well for Tribes: Extreme. Not that I plan to
tell you *anything*! Too bad! :)
However, I finally decided that everyone else was having too much fun
creating their own mission types, so I decided to get in on the action.
I've adapted a new mission type for Tribes: "Flag Hunters"! (Much thanks
to the creators of "Headhunters" for Quake - I loved that MOD!).
The object? Kill everyone of course, but besides that... Everyone
spawns with a flag. If you die, you drop your flag and someone else
can pick it up. If you had picked up several flags before dying, you'll
drop them all, plus the flag you spawned with. The object is to take
as many flags as you can to the "alter". Scoring is additive,
so the more flags you bring at once, the higher your score. e.g.
1 flag = 1 point, 2 flags = 1 + 2 = 3 points, n flags = 1 + ... + n points.
This hasn't been released, so the only server you can play this on is:
"Kidney Thief's Domain" (address "IP:220.127.116.11:28001")
So... check it out. Keep in mind that I'm not a mission designer, so
I'd appreciate any *suggestions* about which maps (I've set up 5) work,
which need improvement, and which just plain suck. Also, any bugs.
Please keep in mind that this was just a pet project, and not
an officially sanctioned Dynamix release.
A final note, if you live within travelling distance of Seattle,
check out http://tribescon.teamplay.net for an upcoming tournament.
(And while you're there, if you like "Flag Hunters", you can buy
me a beer! :)
Thanks all. Happy hunting!
Monday, July 26, '99
Now that I'm sober enough to type again... on Friday, we received
5 cases of our favorite Mirror Pond Pale Ale! Did you hear me? I
said WE GOT BEER!!! Much thanks to Diane Lee and Wasif Azmat!
A couple of new developments: Frohny and I have coded up a debugger
for the Tribes 1.7 patch. Check out Mark Frohnmayer's .plan file
for the details!
Next, I've been feeling sorry for the HUD scripters out there, so
I've added a few minor changes in the hopes that their lives will
become easier. The class: "FearGui::HudCtrl" has been fixed up to
be used to drag HUD components around. In addition, 2 new functions
have been provided: Control::setPosition(ctrl, x, y); and
Control::setExtent(ctrl, w, h); This will allow you to resize and/or
reposition elements on the fly.
Another *extremely cool* development, our lead QA, Eric "Balefire" Lanz
has created a new mission type: "Rabbit". It's currently only available
on the "Pacific NW T1" server. The object is to grab the flag, and run
like hell while all the other players try to hunt you down. Once the
"rabbit" is dead (insert cautionary label for female players here), the
new "rabbit" is whoever can grab the dropped flag. All waypoints are set
to the rabbit to increase the hunt intensity.
That's all for now... back those five cases of beer... um.. I mean work.
Friday, July 02, '99
Recovering well from Canada Day celebrations - as one of the *very*
few Canadians here, we really have to make up for it!
A recent development in Tribes has been the MOD developed by a "Rasia",
a gamer who has taken it upon himself to script a new mission type
called "Arena". The game play is that of a team deathmatch. It is
*awesome*! If you get a chance, check it out.
I've been abducted! I'll be joining Tribes: Extreme for the next
3 or 4 months so help out with the AI development. I'll let you know
more as soon as I do. All I can say is that our bots are going to be
"Sofa King BaddAss!" :)
May 17, 1999
I suppose it's about time I updated my .plan file.
Good news for all you budding Tribes scripters! Recent developments
for Tribes2 will make scripting a *whole* lot easier.
I've been impressed by some of the additional HUDs that people have
created. My favorite, and one I use frequently is "MadHud", found
After talking with several scripters involved, the limitations they
have faced, such as very limited font selection, difficult graphics
display methods, and a general shortage of creatable functional
objects, should be a thing of the past. Object creation is no longer
necessary through the "newObject();" function with it's limited
parameter specs. Any GUI object can now be "instantiated", and *any*
of it's properties can be specified. This includes specifying font
size, color, and style, and having access to base objects which may,
for instance, be draggable, outlined, translucent, etc...
The bad news? You'll have to wait for Tribes2!
On a personal note, SHE SAID YES! Cristine Otazu, my girlfriend of
2 1/2 years has agreed to marry me on July 29th, 2000. The wedding
will be in Victoria, B.C., and then off to Hawaii for a couple of
weeks. It's going to be a busy year!
aka "Kidney Thief"
aka "Thulsa Doom"
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