Hey everyone and welcome back to ForgeHub! Today we have another brand new episode of Creators Spotlight for you; today's episode is with a scripting Forger/Mini-game Forger known as HAYDN est1999. This will be quite a long article since we have our usual amount of Unused content so buckle your seatbelts, it's gonna be a ride! The video is also here as an articulated simplified version as usual so whether you prefer listening to the video or reading the "Directors Cut/Cut content" we've got you covered! More than likely this article will be split into 2 parts like the previous article so be prepared for that if you want all the juicy details! Without further ado let's jump right into Creators Spotlight!
(Video will be posted at 12:30pm EST)
Crush (C): Hey everybody and welcome back to Creators Spotlight! Today we have with us HAYDN est1999, a minigame forger and scripter. Alongside me, today from the ForgeHub Team is Captain Punch (P), and today we're of course interviewing HAYDN (H), Introduce yourself man!
H: Hi my name is Haydn est1999, I love forge! What else can I say? Hahaha, for real though I'm a minigame and scripting forger, building things from Volleyball to unique drag race style evolutions, to other fun minigames.
C: Always great to hear haha, the minigames you have made with scripting are really cool and work pretty well from what I've tested, well to get right on into this how long have you been in the community for Haydn?
H: Well uh I started way back when in Halo 3, primarily just messing around, not taking it too seriously, and playing with the new tool we were given. To make new playgrounds for all my friends to mess around with you know? Haha. Then fast forward to Halo 4 and I made a couple of racetracks, I'm sure Ducain23 would be proud uhh, and then as Halo 5 came into the frame I started to get more interested in the tool, I wanted to learn the in's-&-out's of the tool, so I did, so after a lot of trial and error messing with pieces, properties, and scripts; eventually learning a lot about scripting got me more invested into the tool as I realized the breadth of content made possible by it. I'm entirely self-taught with the scripting stuff, but I've had some help here and there with problems when I come to them. I love pushing Forge to its absolute limits. Sorry if I went on a little bit of a tangent lol.
C: You're good man, that's one of the great things about this interview format is we're able to talk to you more and it also allows our audience to learn more about you and the topics we discuss. You mentioned the scripting stuff, I know you and Punch are both a part of the Scripters Guild, Punch do you know how long Hayden has been a part of the Guild?
P: Uhhh that I'm not 100% sure myself on haha, I know he's been in for a while, probably around when I was on hiatus in 2018 or 2019.
H: That's actually pretty spot on haha, a year or 2 before Infinite was released, about 3 years ago I started asking random questions in the guild and community to help myself understand scripting even more than I already did, but I think it was Yumudas Beegbut, who we should all bow our scripting heads to haha, he recognized me as someone who typically knew what they were doing and became one of the original Journeymen for the scripters Guild, the whole point of the original Journeymen role was to have people you could specifically ask questions to, I believe another Journeyman was actually last month's spotlight (The Guardian163).
P: Well originally you're correct the Journeymen role was for that, however for people reading/watching, now it is an honorific for anyone who has worked on a project within the guild. The original idea was to put it down for people who were willing to help but overall the role evolved into what I just stated above.
H: Well with that new revelation as I didn't actually know it got changed haha, if you have any questions be sure to ping me!
C: When it comes to Forge, what are you typically inspired by? Whether it be for scripting, aesthetic, or anything like that, I know you said you forged with someone else as well so?
H: Absolutely, me and my Forge Partner, Tomton24, have been good mates for a while practically since the beginning of time haha. Every now and then when we're just in a party having a chill night with friends, one of us will say something dumb like, "What if.... this?" and then I'll sit there for a minute thinking and typically say "wait a minute.....I CAN DO THAT!" and brain-blast that idea. Over the next day or two, we'll be in a forge lobby and I'll be working on the scripts while Tom works on an actual layout for the map, and then we all build stuff together. That's how a majority of our projects actually come together, one of us has a dumb idea and then we think "Yea, yea I can do that!" haha, then we spend the next 6ish months struggling with it, usually the results turn out quite well but there have been a few missteps on projects here and there.
C: Nice nice, when it comes to those ideas are you typically inspired by your favorite movies, TV shows, Games, etc? Or do you guys just go off the wall?
H: Honestly it can come from anywhere, I think we've done a couple of movie-inspired ones, we've done sets from certain machinimas, we've done beach ball/volleyball, and we've even been inspired by other forge creations too. For example, our map Dawn of the Banshee takes heavy inspiration from Night of the Mantis. Dawn was meant to be kinda a spiritual successor to it, now I don't know Julianos (The creator of Night of the Mantis) but he's definitely a genius when it comes to scripting, all I know is...I understand his pain haha. Having built Dawn of the Banshee from scratch made me realize just how complicated that game mode/minigame is, but it's so beautiful, they both are.
C: Sounds like quite the achievement in scripting for both of you guys (Julianos | Tom & Hayden), sounds like reverse engineering it was probably a pain too.
H: Well like I said yea I built mine from scratch but I guess you could consider it reverse engineering it too haha. I know I toot my own horn and say I'm good with scripting, but honestly, I'm just here, I'm just happy to help. The real pros and MVPs are the ones who can script and build a good map flow and layout with those scripting skills.
P: There's nothing wrong with being good at scripting, just like art and layout each can only get you so far. People can make something that looks good but doesn't play good, or plays good but doesn't look good, or even make a place to do things and nothing to do there. Uhm, you know what I mean? Like there's a balance with all 3 of those pillars, and they all support each other.
H: I couldn't agree more, which is why I work with Tom, is because I'm good at the technical stuff, while he's good with all the technical stuff, so leave us in a lobby alone for 6 hours and we've got a new map haha.
P: Yea we've got a little bit of a broken record on the whole collaboration front, but it really is something that is effective enough and a process that really does help a map become better overall. If you're still getting something out of that record then that's awesome, the record isn't broken in that way, more like it's something said a lot but it couldn't ring more true. Collaboration just pushes everything forward.
Some of these projects like Dawn of the Banshee, Beach Volleyball, some of the machinima sets; if you could pick one of them and describe the overview of what is actually happening, what the project is, because we say all these modes, but not everyone has been exposed to a mode similar to these modes we've been listing. If you could describe what the experience is and a technical hurdle you had when making some aspects of it I think that would really help the Audience understand how things like this come to reality.
H: Yea absolutely, Dawn of the Banshee, the best way to describe it is where you are/what you're doing when you're a player. So you load up the map and you start off in a void room with no lights, in this room you can select the settings; so Extra points on start, automatic waves with no downtime in between (for more of a rushed feeling to the gameplay), or you can choose Ammo cost reduction. These options are of course like any other setting in any other game but it allows the player to choose their experience and make it as challenging or as easy as they want from the get-go. Once you load in, out of that void room you'll be in the back of a Sci-Fi like ship and constant waves of Banshees will begin to fly at you, these include banshees with different health, and different speeds, and different flight patterns to combat as the rounds progress. There is even a Phaeton that's like a pseudo "Boss" that will fire at you twice. Now while all this is happening your job as a player is to sit there and defend the ship from these attacks, think something like Plants vs Zombies or other tower defense-like games. As the rounds progress, they'll become more and more difficult of course and with time you'll take damage. This damage is indicated by a health bar by where you shoot the banshees, each time you're hit by a Banshee the damage applies in a different way, one way is that of the shields you have, that's your first line of defense (2 hits), after that when your health bar gets to hit you'll have to repair the ship in order to access certain areas or be running at full capacity to fight.
Now that I've described the mode some of the challenges I had when making this was 2 fold, I had an issue where the round counter I had wasn't working, little did I know at the time that Decals don't allow proper scripting movements, you actually have to attach Labels to them in order to get them to move properly. (So that's actually one thing I left out, on a TV in the room you fight in there is a functioning round counter.) Another issue I had initially was making the ammo and weapon upgrade stations work properly, most of the time when I got them to work they'd bust with multiple people, so I had to make it so only 1 person at a time could enter but that was an easy issue to fix. There's an easter egg on the map that no one has found yet, it is pretty contrived, but if anyone finds it I'll send a virtual Hi-Five to them haha.
C: Sounds like a fun conundrum to have to fix, and that's really cool that you have an Easter Egg on the map too
H: Yea it was a headache haha
P: That's one of the reasons why it's good to have a community of people to help you and have that general knowledge base at your fingertips, it allows you to find things faster and solve problems. When someone says "I can't seem to use this script with these objects" and 3 other people say it, it's like ok so maybe it's just a problem with these things, or "hey this worked this time but it didn't work for Psycho Goose over here" in some weird convoluted way it decided to work that time, IT has similar situations too to where 1 key is misplaced or isn't pressed and a lot of that can be applied to scripting, one section of your scripts may be off or maybe you need to use a different script to solve the problem than you originally think. The scripters guild and other resources allow you to confirm and solve problems in 10 minutes of looking things up which is great to have to know more and understand more to help fix conundrums like that.
This article was too long for 1 part once again to check out the 2nd Part: