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#1 Rwn

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Posted 16 July 2003 - 06:29 PM

When you retrieve alien artifacts, you have immediatly the option to do research about it But how do you know that it's a heavy plasma cannon, ammos for plasma pistol, etc.? This refers to the player's knowledge, not X-COM's, so I think there should be something to avoid this.

So, why not allowing research only on "alien artifact 1", "alien artifact 2"... and you discover its function only after you've completed, say, 25% of the required research for this item? Or, more logically, call them "alien weapon" (which includes all plasma guns and launchers), "small alien artifact" (for ammos and bombs) and "UFO component" (for UFO navigation and UFO power source), alien alloys and elerium remaining unchanged.

#2 Jesus Escariut

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Posted 16 July 2003 - 06:41 PM

you could tie in incorrect research with this, lets say our scientist think it does one thing but it does something else and u have to interogate alien soldiers to find out how to use a weapon....

#3 Vaaish

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Posted 16 July 2003 - 07:20 PM

When you retrieve alien artifacts, you have immediatly the option to do research about it But how do you know that it's a heavy plasma cannon, ammos for plasma pistol, etc.? This refers to the player's  knowledge, not X-COM's, so I think there should be something to avoid this.

So, why not allowing research only on "alien artifact 1", "alien artifact 2"... and you discover its function only after you've completed, say, 25% of the required research for this item? Or, more logically, call them "alien weapon" (which includes all plasma guns and launchers), "small alien artifact" (for ammos and bombs) and "UFO component" (for UFO navigation and UFO power source), alien alloys and elerium remaining unchanged.

well say sam and joe are Xcom personnel and suddenly sam sees an alien fire some kind of odd weapon that sends a projectile of sorts at Joe. Well it hits joe ad in a scream of pain joe partially melts. When sam gets back to base he says that joe was hit by some weapon that projects a blob of something very hot. The scientists look at the report and at teh weapon and decide that the closest thing they know if that fits those characteristics is plasma. and dince it is a pretty big gun they call it heavy plasma.

#4 Andy

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Posted 16 July 2003 - 07:53 PM

some items are given.

guns for example. Who in real life, would need to research it before using it? Just show me the trigger and go. The only benefit from research, would be to manufacture weapons.

As for alien electronic parts, I can see where research can come in.....

#5 hippyjon

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Posted 16 July 2003 - 08:19 PM

Who in real life, would need to research it before using it?

gameplay is king...
...or something

#6 GreatGold

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Posted 16 July 2003 - 09:50 PM

As a labratory idea, it would be interesting to have the player see new alien artifacts after a mission, and then give them a temporary name. This is waaaaay v1.0+ stuff, but it would be interesting.

So basically, after a mission, you would come to an X-Net screen of "Unknown Alien Artifact". You would see a 3D model, same as usual, and a generic temp name such as Alien Artifact #17. Lets say you see a Blue Ball with a hand imprint, have no clue what it is, and call it "Blue Ball". Then in the research screen you have the option to research "Blue Ball", and upon completion it is renamed "Mind Probe". That would be a sorta neat feature at some point.

Might be annoying after the 12th game, but for first timers it would be a very interesting feature.

However, until then, I agree with hippyjohn that game balance and design take priority. But, an intruiging though...

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#7 miceless

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 04:02 AM

As a labratory idea, it would be interesting to have the player see new alien artifacts after a mission, and then give them a temporary name.  This is waaaaay v1.0+ stuff, but it would be interesting.

So basically, after a mission, you would come to an X-Net screen of "Unknown Alien Artifact".  You would see a 3D model, same as usual, and a generic temp name such as Alien Artifact #17.  Lets say you see a Blue Ball with a hand imprint, have no clue what it is, and call it "Blue Ball".  Then in the research screen you have the option to research "Blue Ball", and upon completion it is renamed "Mind Probe".  That would be a sorta neat feature at some point.

Might be annoying after the 12th game, but for first timers it would be a very interesting feature.

However, until then, I agree with hippyjohn that game balance and design take priority.  But, an intruiging though...

Gold

:LOL: I like the sound of that idea. Sounds like fun.

Your right, it might get boring, but you can still have default names. In the research, does a picture of the item you are researching show up or is it all text based?

And yes, its way v1.0+
"If it moves - kill it. If it doesn't move - kill it anyway, it might move later."

#8 GreatGold

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 05:47 AM

Your right, it might get boring, but you can still have default names. In the research, does a picture of the item you are researching show up or is it all text based?

Thats a good question. As far as I am aware, no one has created this UI yet. It would be mondo easier to just have a text-based system for this, via the orginal. However, being that the 3D model is already made, and in the X-Net, it might not be too hard to copy the code for that real-time render over to the Research UI screen. An interesting idea...

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#9 Guest_Jim69_*

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 05:50 AM

As a labratory idea, it would be interesting to have the player see new alien artifacts after a mission, and then give them a temporary name.  This is waaaaay v1.0+ stuff, but it would be interesting.

So basically, after a mission, you would come to an X-Net screen of "Unknown Alien Artifact".  You would see a 3D model, same as usual, and a generic temp name such as Alien Artifact #17.  Lets say you see a Blue Ball with a hand imprint, have no clue what it is, and call it "Blue Ball".  Then in the research screen you have the option to research "Blue Ball", and upon completion it is renamed "Mind Probe".  That would be a sorta neat feature at some point.

Might be annoying after the 12th game, but for first timers it would be a very interesting feature.

However, until then, I agree with hippyjohn that game balance and design take priority.  But, an intruiging though...

Gold

Sounds good, but why not just have a default descriptive name ( not sure if above post is suggesting this or something else ) and when it is researched have the official name.

#10 GreatGold

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 06:00 AM

Having a default one, would sort of defeat the purpose. Cause the default name would then give away what the artifact was. Unless the default name was totally undescriptive, which I think would be a major pain in the donkey when selecting something for research....

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#11 miceless

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 06:22 AM

Right, thats why i was wondering if pictures would be included. If you are going to call them alien artifact #1 and so on, thats fine if you have pictures. If not, how will you be able to tell what your researching?

I think including pictures, and having defaults such as alien weapon #1 would be good. Otherwise you have to have a default description that has more detail.
"If it moves - kill it. If it doesn't move - kill it anyway, it might move later."

#12 GreatGold

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 07:49 AM

Yeah, I agree. However, what I was trying to say before, but failed to get across, is this idea: DIRECTLY after a mission is fought and won, if a new Alien Artifact is captured, a completley new screen would pop up, similar to the X-NET. This screen would have the 3D model, and a temprary generic name. After the player looks over the 3D model, they could name it the final name. However, this final name would be replaced by the proper Game Name, after the artifact is researched.

So, in effect, the Research UI would not need a picture of model present, since the player naming was taking care of after the mission. I think this would be the compromise. The reason I think this would work better is this: unless we decide to have a 3D model in the Research screen for v1.0, it would really be a pain to include that with a new release. It might be easier just to create a new window from scratch, that we know wont mess up anything old. This could very well be a v1.0+ type of thing, if handled properly. It would require a bit new coding, ok perhaps more than a bit, but it would be a distinctive Xenocide touch, seperating future versions from X-Com (like the Ops DB will hopefully do for v1.0).

Of course, if we do have a 3D model present in the Research UI, then I think the other option would be easier, where you just have a generic name in the Researech screen, look at the model, and then research it. After research, the official name would be used.

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#13 Guest_Jim69_*

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 09:53 AM

Yeah, thats a much better idea than mine. Could be a lot of fun, plus if u can't be arsed after a while u just accept the current name. Sorta like a "Commander, we got this dodgy thing we nicked off the aliens. What d'ja wanna call it 4 now, we'll work out what it is and name it accordingly l8r."

#14 j'ordos

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 10:58 AM

Or if you REALLY like the name you gave it, have the option to let the name you gave it remain the definitive one.
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#15 Breunor

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 11:02 AM

Being the devil's advocate, do you think it would be that cool to see the model of what's obviously a rifle, and have it say alien artifact? True, some items are easier than others to guess at, but since every weapon in the game will be documented in the program's user guide/manual, you're not going to surprise even someone who's new to the game.

Something like this would be v1+++ IMO, as it could be useful in a multiplayer system, where you're playing against another player and you both can choose a one of several races to play, as well as one of several tech trees to use. Sort of like Master of Orion, where you could design a race to play, eventually someone will create more than 2 tech trees for multiplayer. For variety, you then mix and match race/tech tree. Then using the unknown artifact would make sense, if you were not sure what did what.

#16 j'ordos

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 11:08 AM

You mean every weapon, including alien, is already going to be desrcibed in the manual? Awww, that's going to ruin the thrill of discovery... for those who haven't been here. ^_^
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#17 Breunor

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 11:53 AM

Well, you're assuming the average person will actually READ the manual... I figure 80% won't have a clue what most things do... I've programming my RTFM macro in anticipation... :D

#18 j'ordos

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 12:07 PM

Well yes, and then they all come to this forum asking questions that have been asked thousands of times and actually are written in the manual... :hammer:

that macro is a good idea :D Perhaps creating an extra forum : "xenocide newbie tech support" or something with RTFM as auto-reply to whatever post they make :naughty:
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#19 Nickisimo

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 12:20 PM

Between the manual and a FAQ that's sure to exist...a RTFM or RTFF macro would definitely be called for. :idea:

"How do I make it so my guys can see in the dark?" RTFM! "Oh, Electro-flare..." :hammer:

#20 LordT

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 02:14 PM

"How do you know she is a witch?"
"She looks like one!"

I think the same could be applied for most alien artifacts, especially when your troops all see what the aliens use them for.

And about the FAQ talk: Bruenor: the one on the future website should work now (tell me if otherwise), so maybe you could go ahead and fiddling with it?
Take your time and submit a name to the Names Database.

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#21 Breunor

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 02:18 PM

There used to be a web site that would help in our redirection of such queries. IIRC it was called [insert the term for a female dog here]slapped.com. You put in some physical traits, and t would make a face for you that received some really big slap across the face. Then you could email it as a card to somebody. Just add that to the macro when the question is obviously due to being lazy...

[Breunor notices he's not in the off topic forum]

Uh, oh yeah... well, I still suggest not doing this due to the fact that the benefit gained would appear to be vastly outweighed by the effort required to implement it. But that's the beauty of mod making, right?

#22 Jesus Escariut

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 03:37 PM

i dont like the idea of alien weapons being in the manual, i mean.. whats the point of researching if you already know it is in a manual (since the manual is issued by the X-COM Organization) perhaps if the manual had photos of items but not a clear description "troops said it shot a green glow and burned like fire" refeering to a plasma gun... hmm im losing what i was going for.. maybe some one else can improve on my idea

:huh?:

ah ha, we know what a plasma pistol is since it was recovered in the roswell crash ? so we have a OLD report on it... of an old plasma weapon... ehhh... i give up <_<

#23 Cpl. Facehugger

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 04:04 PM

I agree with Escariut, the idea of having alien weapons in the manual takes away from the discovery of the game. Having standard human weapons makes sense though.

Perhaps, if instead of an actual picture of the weapon, maby we could just have a silhoutte? or just an outline. And if the weapons are similarily shaped then it might surprise a veteran who recognizes the genral shape of the weapons

Edited by Cpl. Facehugger, 17 July 2003 - 04:07 PM.

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#24 ApOcaLyPSe_1985

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 05:09 PM

I like the idea, but don't make a silhouette.
Show the real image in greyscale with a big "CLASSIFIED" stamp on it.

#25 j'ordos

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 05:15 PM

Or show some... that way you're teased a bit and there's still some stuff to discover.
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#26 Guest_Jim69_*

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 06:08 PM

No point in teasing, u can see it in the equip screen. Oh yeah, as 4 sayin that it is beyond V1, why is this? Correct me if I'm wrong, but would it not be easier to add this small screen, I doubt it would be much work, 4 V1, and maybe disable it to keep it true to UFO ( so that it's there 4 testing for l8r versions ). I'm sure some ppl who want 2 make mods would like it, maybe to change it, and I would have thought it would be easier to program 4 V1 rather than adding it l8r. I could be wrong tho, I often am.

#27 Jesus Escariut

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 06:13 PM

instead of an actual image how bout a rough sketch that way we can use all this cool concept art, like a marines idea of what the weapon was... wont look exactley like the real thing, but the veterans will be able to pick it out :wink: ... not to mention us

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 06:25 PM

I understand what ur getting at, type a easter egg kinda thing, but seriously. You have the item right in ur storage. Why draw a sketch? It's right next 2 u. I like the idea of a report type thing, with a fake/lookalikee photo with classified stamped on it. Then asks u 2 name project. Possibly that name could become that items nickname. Like: Plasma "Hot Rocks" Rifle. Just a bad example BTW :D

#29 Jesus Escariut

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 06:31 PM

i guess i wasnt clear on that one, this is for the manual we would use sketches... this is before you ever get the weapon into your greedy little paws

then you could have some background info on it like a story or journal from a solider that witnessed one... would make a nice manual, thats something that i loved about warcraft 1 & 2 all the artwork in the manuals, it gave my imagination somehting to play with

#30 Rwn

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 09:02 PM

And why not randomize the appearance of the artifacts? OK, a plasma pistol is obviously different from an alien grenade, but, why not creating pools of artifacts (weapons, ammos and UFO equipment) and randomize items inside each category? I mean, there's no reason why alien ammos should look like human ammos, and not like X-COM's mind bender.

Well, I assume this would deeply change the game, and the number of alien artifacts in X-COM is too limited for this to have an impact, so let's say it's an proposition for v.1++++...

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Posted 18 July 2003 - 05:43 AM

i guess i wasnt clear on that one, this is for the manual we would use sketches... this is before you ever get the weapon into your greedy little paws

then you could have some background info on it like a story or journal from a solider that witnessed one... would make a nice manual, thats something that i loved about warcraft 1 & 2 all the artwork in the manuals, it gave my imagination somehting to play with

What???? U mean that the alien weapons r gonna be in a manual? Why the heck is that then? It has never happened b4, why start now? X-Com has supposed to just have been started, why would ne1 know all the weapons that they r gonna use, even outlines, when they haven't started using them yet? BB's don't come till l8r in the game, same with Heavy Plasma etc. So, we are just gonna take the mystery out of the game 4 anyone who didn't help develop it?

Also, is there actually gonna be a manual? Surely an FAQ would surffice, although this is at least a year away so it isn't a problem.

#32 Breunor

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Posted 18 July 2003 - 08:24 AM

No no no guys... manual as in the Xenocide game manual. As in, "Chapter 1: the geoscape is where you track your daily ufo activity, and have time controls", "Chapter 2: the battlescape has the following controls...", "you purchase scientists and use labs to research items you find in the game.." type of manual. What a new player reads to learn how to play the game, what the mouse controls are, etc.

I can see not putting the research tree into the manual, and make the player figure out what to do. Do you also not tell them they have to build alien containment, catch a particular alien alive, and research it to win the game? Or only tell them that much and let them catch every one to figure out which it is? Do you tell them they need a navigator, as well as a commander? Consider all the games out there that have research trees. I can't think of one that doesn't tell you what each part does, and the dependencies between each. You could do it here, but imagine all the help requests as people can't figure out what to do to win.

As I mentioned before though, in a multiplayer or mod situation, you can create new trees of research and that makes it more of an unknown. But I can't imagine the standard version of this game requiring lots of research and not telling the player about it. The manual might say that you cna research plasma weapons, but might say that there's a pistol, rifle, heavy, etc. Or maybe it doesn't tell you the stats for each, so you have to research it to determine if it's worth using. That makes the most sense to me.

#33 Cpl. Facehugger

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Posted 18 July 2003 - 08:37 AM

I think that only the basic human weapons should be described in the manual. I feel that it adds to the sense of discovery.

And about newbies not knowing about needing to capture aliens, wasn't this handled in the original xcom? I think it said in the manual that capturing aliens was important somewhere, then when you researched alien origins it said to capture a leader and so on. If we do xenocide like that, the beginners should have all the instructions they need and they can discover the cool facets of xcom for themselves.


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#34 j'ordos

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Posted 18 July 2003 - 08:48 AM

I agree with Cpl. Facehugger. You can put most of the info in the ufopedia, e.g. for alien containment: "warning! No live aliens can be recovered unless your base has an alien containment!" at the bottom, for those who don't want to read it all. I don't think the entire research tree should be available in the manual, it worked for Xcom1 (ok it did not work for TFTD, but for a different reason, which I do not hope Xenocide copies... damn bugs (not the alien type :wink: ))!!
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#35 Deimos

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Posted 18 July 2003 - 11:48 AM

My feeling is that the manual should only be used to get the player started in the game. Putting weapons and other artifacts into the manual is going to spoil the discovery side of the game.

For the difficult stuff (I can't believe I said that) like alien containment when an alien is captured we should divulge any new info to the player through the game. Not have it all spelled out in a manual.

If a player wants to know how to use (as the continuing example) alien containment he/she should go to x-net where a breakdown of its purpose and how to ue it in game should be. I'm all for giving player the info they need but in a way they don't realise they're getting it.

When a player captures a live alien at the end of a mission and it dies because you haven't built an AC there could be a small popup report saying the alien died because.... Maybe in a similar style to what gee wiz Escariut did with the laser pistol explanation. That way the player still gets the info and we keep it out of the manual, which could spoil the game for some people.

#36 Breunor

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Posted 18 July 2003 - 02:22 PM

These last 3 posts convinced me. I had forgotten those points and they all make sense now. So when you finish a mission and find new items, it would say you have X number of alien artifacts. When you go into the research screen to pick one, should we have a render of the relevent model, but still call it alien artifact? Once the research is complete, then the real name is applied to it from that point on, but for simplicity missions always just mention alien artifacts, not 2 of this, 4 of that, etc. Just like the original in that sense.

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Posted 18 July 2003 - 03:31 PM

I had a thought ( Damn, 2 thoughts in 5 mins, I'm on fire :devilburn: )

What if the player was doin really crap after 5 months or so say, a report from a scientist says something like "Sir, we need to capture some aliens alive for our research, we seriously believe it could help us win the war." Not giving away too much, just a little nudge in the right direction sorta thing. Maybe even leave out the winning war bit in case it is too much info.

In response to Brue: I prefer a screen giving a nickname to it after the battle, but thats just personal preferance. It all depends how the research screen is gonna look I spose, but since I think the art and prog. depts are kinda busy right now I guess this can wait. Unless someone has nothing 2 do and could whip up an example of what bruenor is saying. ( I'd do it myself but I am crap with art programs, it's hard enough learning C++ :D)

Edited by Jim69, 18 July 2003 - 03:34 PM.


#38 Jesus Escariut

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Posted 19 July 2003 - 02:05 AM

you know when i think about it... i dont think i ever read the original manual for xcom... maybe because my uncle gave it to me but never gave me the manual... but anyway. i had a LOT of fun learning that game... a lot of trial and error.. but thats what made the game so great to me, i had to learn all this new technology ... about these freaky kids with big eyes runnin around nekid on some farmers property cuttin open his moo moo's *fallout refrence* but .. ehh.. let the rookies learn on their own

#39 GreatGold

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Posted 19 July 2003 - 10:24 AM

Hey -

I think it might be wisest to have two manuals. One for fun, where only the neccessities are given away. This is the one people would use, until they get stuck on something. We should then also have an all-inclusive version available that really explains everything, word for word. Including all weapons, all concepts, etc.

Here is why:
The first manual is great for gameplay, but if you get stuck, your in a real hole. The second would get you out of that hole. Also, for people who want to mod the main game, it might be best to have a document that really explains the details. Things such as: here is the algorith that determines if a alien craft gets detected by the hyperwave decoder. Change variable X for distance, Y for randomness, and Z for how long it takes... or however it ends up working. Both are useful, and it really shouldnt be that hard to have the second one. I mean, hopefully everything being done is documented anyway, its just a matter of packaging it nicely.

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#40 Cpl. Facehugger

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Posted 19 July 2003 - 05:59 PM

I don't know, the temptation might be too much for some people. Like me! :D
Perhaps if it was put deep in the game's folder, where your average skillless person (like me) couldn't get to it, then it would be fine.

Anyway in the first manual there should be the real meat (story, description of mission, basic human weapons, maby articles like in that tftd mini manual thing.)
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#41 Guest_Jim69_*

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Posted 19 July 2003 - 06:10 PM

Or the first manual is inside the final installation, and 2 get the Dev Pak u download from the site, along with the second manual. As for players who get stuck, I think u give the gamers far too little credit. Did ne1 here get permananly stuck coz the manual didn't hold ur hand? I certainly didn't and haven't met ne1 who has. I started playing when I was 7-8 and I'm not the sharpest knife in the drawer.

#42 GreatGold

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Posted 19 July 2003 - 06:28 PM

All I can say is "Never underestimate the stupidity of the masses." Although, for the most part, I agree. Most people can figure it out. But they didnt come up with RTFM for nothing!

Also, I think of a game manual as a work of art. Its the creators intermediate channel to the player, before they start the game and form an opinion. Maybe its my Flight Sim background, but a good manual is a must!

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#43 Cpl. Facehugger

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Posted 19 July 2003 - 06:31 PM

Yes a good manual is very important, but I don't think that the manual should reveal everything like a faq or strategy guide. Besides in the space that was being used for info on the heavy plasma, you could put in more story snippets which is never a bad thing!
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#44 Kenshiro

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Posted 19 July 2003 - 07:57 PM

Hey just because this is an open source project doesn't mean you can't sell a strategy guide to support the site. Does it?

#45 Breunor

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Posted 19 July 2003 - 10:06 PM

We could make a PDF file for the strategy guide, and offer that either free or for $5 or so. It could be titled Strat Guide/Spoiler.

Having a hint dropped in the game might be good, if you include some variables that are hit when you find live aliens, have containment, etc. If any are untouched after X months, the end of month report mentions something that points the player in the right direction.

#46 Fred the Goat

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Posted 21 July 2003 - 10:51 AM

Sounds good. I like the $5 strategy guide idea - it's what everyone else does. What's that? You're just not figuring out where to go next? You want to know what the football launcher does before you "waste time" researching it? You want to find all the secret weapons? Well, for just $5...

And you have to remember, when you've researched all the things that say "giant alien destructo ray" the next step is all that stuff you didn't really think about before - sectoid engineer, reaper terrorist, etc. And eventually you'll realize that you never did knock out a commander (you have the mind probe by then, so you know they're out there). Anyway, along the way we'll have all the alien missions, and those ought to point you in the right direction, along with the scientists' promptings, which I thought was also a good idea.

#47 mad menno

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Posted 26 July 2004 - 08:53 AM

Cool idea about the renaming but, even if you see pictures of the items you won't be able to quickly research the right ammo for the gun, thats a bit suck... and if you can see it someway then the whole idead of you is gone (The not knowing by player what the item is).

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#48 Moriarty

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Posted 27 July 2004 - 11:08 AM

I guess when you have researched a gun and not researched the corresponding ammo yet, the scientists' report could include something like:

"our research indicates that alien item #32 might be the missing component for this device to work properly, but none of us is willing to try it until we have researched alien item #32 thoroughly. call us cowards, but we like to walk around with two arms attached to our bodies."

and the other way around:

"having completed our research, we now know that this device is some kind of energy storage module designed to give off well-defined short bursts of energy. the precise use is as of yet unknown, but it might be some kind of ammo for an energy gun, and preliminary topographic analysis shows that it might fit into a slot on alien item #9. research into alien item #9 is recommended if we are to fully understand the purpose of this device"

...on the other hand, that would mean a whole lot more text to write...
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#49 Paladin

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Posted 30 July 2004 - 09:03 PM

I definitely prefer it that way too, much more realistic and immersive...

Besides, the fact that we can study and SELL items that we supposedly know nothing about, is kinda weird... Of course we'd have a basic idea of what's the artefact's purpose, but enough to put a precise pricetag on it? I don't think so...

Overall, a nice enhancment that would only require creative text work like moriarty's...

(Oh, and we HAVE to make reasearch use up some of the items, and the fewer we have of each the harder the research...) :D
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#50 mj_12commando

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Posted 25 March 2005 - 02:44 PM

some items are given.

guns for example. Who in real life, would need to research it before using it? Just show me the trigger and go. The only benefit from research, would be to manufacture weapons.

As for alien electronic parts, I can see where research can come in.....

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Er... maybe the weapon has a weird safety mechanism which requires researching? Or maybe it's DNA-locked to the aliens and you need to research to bypass it?

But, certain weapons might not need researching, unless they have special features.

For example, you might have an alien sniper rifle. You can basically pick it up and use it, but without research, its scope doesn't work, and it has really bad accuracy.

After research, you've got a pinpoint, reasonably fast-firing weapon.

Or, the Blaster Bomb. What if, without research, you could use it as a direct-fire weapon like a unguided rocket launcher, but only could target enemies and designate a course after researching it?