WIP - Battle of Orion (BTB space battle mini-game)

Discussion in 'Halo and Forge Discussion' started by Pat Sounds, Mar 6, 2016.

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  1. Pat Sounds

    Pat Sounds Spartan I
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    So here's something I've been working on. It's sort of my take on a big team battle map. Basically, it's a zero-gravity single base strongholds game in space. The goal of the game is to capture and hold the giant frigate in the middle of the map. The gametype is called 'Boarding Party'. I also have a Slayer variant called Squadrons that follows most of the same rules. I'm not the first person to have a dogfighting map, and I'm not the first person to make a zero g minigame, so respect to those that have come before me...Hopefully combining these makes for something interesting and new.

    Here are the rules of the game:

    - Players start on the edge of the map in one of 4 small transport ships. Each ship has two banshees which respawn almost immediately.

    - Players spawn equipped with a light rifle and a hydra launcher. All other weapon pickups are on pads on the top of the frigate or in the frigate itself.

    - Movement has been modifed to allow Spartans to fly. Zero gravity, increased jump height, infinite boosters and the ground pound allow you to move in any direction but upwards.

    - The frigate comes with a scorpion built in as a turret, a Mantis on the top, a Phaeton, two banshees, a SAW and a spartan laser. (the photos / videos show other weapons from previous builds)

    - You can still fall off the map, though there are many points at which you can clamber back onto solid ground to get a jump again. I've put a net of kill barriers at the bottom so that you don't have to wait too long to respawn, but it's not perfect. It's important to get accustomed to moving around in zero g and to not overshoot with your ground pounds. Once you miss with a ground pound, you're gonna plummet to your death no matter what :p

    - The goal of the game is to capture the stronghold in the center. That's it!


    So far I've only had a few players on the map at a time, but I hope this would be a pretty ridiculous BTB experience. It's already pretty hilarious and fun with just the 2v2 / 4v4 games I've gotten on it.

    This map's gonna get a test in large lobby tomorrow night, so I figured I'd post some images / videos up here in case anyone has any thoughts. It's still VERY much a work in progress and there are a lot of variables to manage with all the changes I've made to weapons and physics, so I'd appreciate any feedback you have!

    Here are some links to raw clips of me testing the game:

    http://xboxclips.com/Pat+Sounds/54c02b79-7b7a-4758-a8c2-630d92599b17


    http://xboxclips.com/Pat+Sounds/188294dd-2fb4-418f-aee9-a4a948797d63


    http://xboxclips.com/Pat+Sounds/d0fac5b6-fa29-42f3-b077-

    And here are some photos:

    Screenshot-Original (97).png Screenshot-Original (98).png Screenshot-Original (99).png Screenshot-Original (100).png Screenshot-Original11.png Screenshot-Original12.png Screenshot-Original13.png Screenshot-Original14.png Screenshot-Original15.png
     
    #1 Pat Sounds, Mar 6, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2016
  2. Pat Sounds

    Pat Sounds Spartan I
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    Here are a few more pictures for the sake of overkill. These are from an older build so there are some extra power weapons that I have since removed.

    Screenshot-Original2.png Screenshot-Original3.png Screenshot-Original5.png Screenshot-Original6.png Screenshot-Original7.png Screenshot-Original8.png Screenshot-Original9.png Screenshot-Original10.png
     
    #2 Pat Sounds, Mar 6, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2016
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  3. Matt has Soul

    Matt has Soul Spartan I

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    I'd suggest you put all of those screenshots in a spoiler to shorten your post some. As far as the map, hopefully I'll be able to get into a large lobby and play it soon. I'm a little concerned about the zero g, however. Most maps involving zero g have a steep learning curve and countless deaths due to missed ground pounds and boosts can get annoying very quick.
     
  4. Pat Sounds

    Pat Sounds Spartan I
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    Yeah, the zero G might get crazy, I'll have to see what happens when I test it with a lot of people. It could be awesome, but it's possibly a game breaker.

    I have altered the ground pound physics a bit to make them pretty accurate when you're trying to drop down on something, and the map is rather flat from the bases to the freighter. You can control how you fly horizontally with pretty good precision, and the freighter is a really large target...so once you get the hang of it, traversal works pretty well. But you're right, there will likely be a steep learning curve for anyone jumping into the map.
     
  5. Pat Sounds

    Pat Sounds Spartan I
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    If anyone is interested, I made a video of me getting rocked in some early gameplay tests. As you can see, the zero G mobility works once you get a hang of it...I'm interested to see how this plays out with a larger team.

     
  6. Pat Sounds

    Pat Sounds Spartan I
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    Been updating this quite a bit. I've nearly maxed out my object count and gone over on light map and FX, but the map is starting to come together into something pretty fun. I've added lots of weapons throughout the map, as well as several floating asteroid islands. Each asteroid hosts a power weapon and / or an objective point. I've spruced up the red and blue spawns to be rather large attack ships with an armory room, teleporters to the second level and scorpion turrets on the top.

    I've attached some images below, as well as a little walkthrough video. I got a few good 8v8 games on this last night and it was pretty nuts. I'll post some video of that when I can. Right now I'm working on setting up CTF, Assault and Strongholds variations with the zero G mechanics.

    9.png 8.png 7.png 5.png 4.png 3.png 2.png 1.png

     
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  7. Pat Sounds

    Pat Sounds Spartan I
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    Some more photos:

    18.png 17.png 16.png 15.png 13.png 12.png (open the pod bay doors, HAL....) 10.png [/SPOILER
     
  8. Pat Sounds

    Pat Sounds Spartan I
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    This will be a long post, but I'm getting closer to finishing this one. Recently I've made a couple of changes which seem to be improving the game. I think I'm on the precipice of releasing this one. Just few more things to test out!

    There are a lot of them so I've included them in a spoiler:

    - I changed the name of the map to "Ambush at Orion", which is 5% less bland than the original name.

    - I set up the new custom gametypes for the map: "Squadrons" (Slayer), "Ambush" (Assault), "Boarding Party" CTF and "Spaceholds" (Strongholds)....Still working on the last name...I'm also considering a SWAT variant, although that may prove too challenging for some players.

    In Assault and CTF, the flag / ball holder has a faster boost and higher jump, but also lower shields. They are also almost instantly tagged when spotted, since it's easy to jump from the frigate to the base.

    - Reduced booster speed, in order to get a more even match between banshees and flying spartans.

    - No more infinite ammo. Instead I've created a weapons table at each base with an extra Hydra, as well as some Tier 1 UNSC weapons.

    - Added detail and more spawns to the red and blue bases. Moved objective points inside so you have to actually board the ships to score.

    - Moved the phaeton to the SPNKR position, removed the SPNKR. Screw the SPNKR. No one's able to get kills with it.

    - Added a power weapon to each asteroid to give players incentive to utilize each in slayer as well as strongholds. Power weapons on this map now include: Beam Rifle, Railgun, and Spartan Laser. There's also a Halo CE pistol by the monolith.

    - I added a teleporter net at the bottom instead of a death pit, based on some feedback. The net will drop you at one of two smaller 'lifeboat' ships on diagonal sides of the level. From there you can hop back on a Banshee or a gravity lift to get back into the action. I also set up half-assed bases for green and yellow teams at this location, in case anyone wants to play multi-team or doubles on the map.

    - I added a landing pad to one of the asteroids and moved it up a bit to clear the teleporter net. I also (nearly) maxed out my object count adding details, lights, cameras, etc. throughout the map. I'm wrangling some overbudget fx and light maps, but it seems to be performing fine.

    Here are some images of the new teleporter net / lifeboat system:

    Screenshot-Original.png Screenshot-Original1.png

    Here's a gif of the teleporter net in action: http://imgur.com/2PpS0eZ
     
  9. Max Extra

    Max Extra Forged Friday Founder
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    This was an absolute blast to play on with Zero G at Forged Friday. Even though the two space ships in space has been done before, Ambush at Orion has a truly unique feel to it that was loved by all the players in the session. The map was fun and playstyle was great. It allowed for those to take it seriously to play side by side with people who just wanted to have flying around because of how this is set up. My real only thoughts to spruce it up a bit was a teleporter net in a pacman fashion or something that allowed the groundpounders and drifters to stay in the fight without a respawn time(which it seem youve added) also Space nets made of grave zones that would function as breaks when people couldnt slow down the momentum from the boots. besides that id love to see how objectives beyond strong holds plays out.

    Overall super fun map and playstyle, and looks great too!
     
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  10. MstrBlonde

    MstrBlonde Legendary
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    This map was SUPER fun to play this past Friday, even moreso than the previous Friday. Zipping around in 3D space with rockets and fuel rods criss-crossing the entire playing field is the best kind of chaotic fun. The map's aesthetics are spot-on; just the right amount of larger asteroids with random debris thrown in. The only suggesting I'd make there (as I mentioned Friday) is adding a slow rotation to some of the static debris items, giving them a more "free-floating" feel.

    My only gripe was running out of thrusters and floating helplessly away until the soft killzone got me, but I see you've added the safety nets around the map, which is awesome.

    A side-thought: When you're inside the ship, is it possible to use in inverted gravity volume? If you jump, you just kind of stick to the ceiling, something that might be frustrating if there is combat surrounding an objective. Not a game-breaker since you can thrust or ground-pound, but I thought I'd put it out there.

    I really hope we can test this on Friday with some objective game types!
     
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  11. Pat Sounds

    Pat Sounds Spartan I
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    It's funny you mention this, because I actually just finished setting up this exact type of gravity volume system! It doesn't reset you to normal physics, since there are more things at play than simply jump volume to get the zero g effect, but it gets close and does a good job of keeping you tethered to the floor and unable to float away. I've set it up this sort of false gravity in the middle ship , as well as the red and blue motherships.

    This gravity system is actually working out to make encounters pretty cool in the small Assault and CTF games I've tested it on. I've put the objectives inside the small back room of the ship itself, and opened up a couple rooftop access points so players can drop into when assaulting the mothership, but because of the gravity volumes, you can't jump out to escape as easily. As a result you have to hunker down and fight it out in close quarters if you want to defend the objective. Hopefully the sheer number of players in an 8v8 and the small size of the objective rooms doesn't break the game, but I like the way the gravity system makes combat transition from huge open spaces to a close-quarters brawl in just a few seconds.

    I haven't figured out the best way to implement Max's air brake idea, though I'm not sure if it's still necessary with the new lifeboat and gravity systems...I'm also sitting at 1017 objects and fiddling around with the budget to add new stuff, so I'm probably getting near the point of completion. I had to delete almost all of the tiny asteroids, but whatever. At this point my focus is gonna shift to fine tuning the custom game physics for the best balance, etc. I'm curious to see how Assault and CTF shake out with larger teams...The fact that spartans can fly greatly alters the speed of those games, so I've done a little bit of tweaking to the carrier traits that I'm gonna have to figure out in play testing.
     
  12. Dunco

    Dunco Troll Whisperer
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    Dude this map was so much fun. I didn't even care that I spent most of the time drifting helpless into the void. That first jump I made caught me off guard and I panicked and forgot what button to press for ground pound. It was awesome.
     
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  13. Pat Sounds

    Pat Sounds Spartan I
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    Check it out, I made a quick video from that game the other night, haha.



    I'll probably use it on the map page when I finally finish or something.
     
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  14. Max Extra

    Max Extra Forged Friday Founder
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    Again a super fun map for sure lol. We will need to try out more game types on it in the future. I think we need a better way of identifying the bomb or objective character because it was a little difficult to find them. but still awesome map!
     
  15. Pat Sounds

    Pat Sounds Spartan I
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    Yeah, I got a chance to peek at the VOD after you guys tested it. I think there are just a few minor tweaks I need to make before I put the map out...One of those tweaks will be putting a tag on the carrier as soon as they pick up the ball. I could tell it was hard for people to find you once you snagged the bomb. Otherwise, it seemed like the gravity volumes and rescue ships were working fine.

    I'll update it and start working on some sort of 'zero g flight tips' video to make a proper map post once I get back...I'll be MIA for 4-5 more days at least.
     
  16. Chronmeister

    Chronmeister Blockhead
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    The game on this map from a couple weeks ago still sticks out in my mind. I really had a blast figuring out the movement mechanics. I think you could develop a series of maps that fit the gametype. Playing around with different geometry for zero gravity battle could result in some interesting gameplay. Think Enders Game. It would be really sweet if the horizon wasnt locked in and you could rotate 360 degrees.
     
  17. Pat Sounds

    Pat Sounds Spartan I
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    Holy crap man! I've been thinking about making a couple more 'sequel' maps that would fit into this theme. One of my ideas was to make something that's based around a starship blown into multiple free floating pieces, or maybe a Death Star trench run map...But damn, Ender's Game - that's a WAY better idea. A battle school map would be pretty awesome...I'm definitely gonna do that. FANTASTIC concept! In addition to Slayer or Assault, it would work well as a Breakout gametype.

    There should be some scripted objects that re-arrange to change the layout of the map throughout the game. Also, it could be sweet if in addition to the zero-g 'core' of the battle sphere there were gravity volumes on the shell of the map itself to allow you to walk around upside-down and sideways when you land on the outer edges. So you could land upside-down, then jump up and fly to the other side of the level. These could also be scripted to be turned on and off on timers or switches, or flipped around to push you to the center, what have you. I'm not sure if you can do that with gravity volumes, but it's worth a shot. It'd be especially cool if scripting could be done via targets...Shoot a target to re-arrange a group of floating objects, another to change the flow of gravity, etc.

    I wanna learn more about scripting, and a spherical battleground with some scripted objects and objectives that move around to rearrange the battlefield would be a pretty good way to learn how to do it. I might need some co-forging help on this one though...

    For now I'll brainstorm some more ideas. I'm in New Zealand right now but once I get out of Middle Earth I'll be back on the forging scene...Just gotta get this damn ring to Mordor first.
     
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  18. Pat Sounds

    Pat Sounds Spartan I
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    Another long post here, but I got a chance to scope the video from the most recent Forged Friday and will likely be making a few changes based on my observations once I get back. Here's a list of what I'm thinking of changing:

    1 - The Spartan Laser is too hard to get kills with and probably needs to go. I could swap this out for another weapon...Top candidates in my mind are a Railgun or a Binary Rifle, though IDK if having dual snipers is a good idea...Another idea is to move the Phaeton to the Spartan Laser position, since it acts as a sort of power weapon against the Banshees.

    2 - Max is the first person I've noticed who's found the hidden speed boost...However, it doesn't really affect you in flight as I'd hoped. I will probably swap it out with an OS or damage boost. I might also move the power-up into the Spartan Laser's position if the weapons I mentioned above don't add anything to the game.

    3 - The switch in the center ship turns off all the lights, but also deactivates gravity in all the ships...I'm not sure if anyone has picked up on this yet...Currently it's scripted to despawn the gravity volumes and then respawn them 20 seconds later. This allows you to fly on the ship, but I don't think the effect of turning off gravity is obvious enough to players. What I'd really like to do is to script the gravity volumes to instantly rotate 180 degrees so players in the ships float upwards a little bit when the button is pressed, but I haven't figured out how to script that and have them return to their normal positions after a set amount of time. Does anyone have any tips on how to set that up?

    4 - 100 kills might be a little high for the BTB Slayer mode. I could drop this down to something more attainable like 75. I'll probably also set up a 4v4 Slayer variant with an even lower kill count.

    5 - I'm also open to suggestions for a new name. Currently the map is titled "Ambush at Orion", but that's basically a working title. I'm considering some other names, including "Spacewalk", "Space Oddity" or even just "Space Odyssey". If anyone has an idea for a better name, I'd love to hear it.
     
  19. MstrBlonde

    MstrBlonde Legendary
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    Space Oddity is a great name. We played this again on Friday and it was still fun and very popular. At this point it doesn't feel much like a WIP, because it plays almost perfectly.

    If scripting does work on gravity volumes (I didn't know that it did) I can help with that for sure.
     
  20. Pat Sounds

    Pat Sounds Spartan I
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    Cool man, thanks for the feedback! I think 'Space Oddity' is my current favorite as well. I just have a few more 'icing on the cake' ideas, and then I'd agree that this one is finished. In an attempt to reach out to more people for ideas and tips, I've posted another thread about the specific types of scripting I'm trying to do (as well as a long rant about ideas for sequel maps I have) here:

    http://www.forgehub.com/threads/loo...s-for-a-zero-gravity-map.151401/#post-1634161

    The current version of the map has some very simple scripting applied to the gravity volumes, but you can read what my other ideas are there. I've gotten a few offers for assistance, but I may tap you for additional advice at some point if I'm still having trouble with it. I greatly appreciate the offer to help out.

    Although I'm about to start my long journey home from New Zealand, I probably still won't be there for Forged Friday this week. One of the bands I'm in picked up a rather important gig right after I get back, so I'll probably have to cram in a rehearsal that night. If the lobby isn't tired of it yet and I get a chance to make some alterations, I may submit it for another round of playtesting. If not, I'll joining you guys next week for a final test before posting it on Forgehub.

    I think the zero G physics might warrant some explanation beyond a map description, so I'm planning on making a how-to video in addition to a gameplay video...On that tip, does anyone know how to capture a video longer than 30 seconds? So far I've been using the 'Xbox record that' function to pull out gameplay clips from the theater mode, but I can only get short clips. I'd like to get an entire match recorded on it, perhaps in split screen with a few different perspectives. I'm not sure if there's a way to record for 5 minutes straight from the xbox, if there's some sort of app out there that can do it, or if I have to get some sort of physical device to take the video output from the console and record it...
     
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