What does Privateer 1.0 need?

Rylex

Rear Admiral
about Privateer Remake ...

Heya everybody,

for those who don't know me... I worked with the WC Unknown Enemy project as ingame rendered video-scenes creator...

I've tested the Privateer Remake ver. 0.8 and my thoughts were the following...
(these are my opinions and I know that not everybody may think like I do...)

- First the very big question I would definitely remove Military ships from the buy menu. The player should not be able to buy them... this game is called "Privateer" remember... (I will not comment any further... I just have the same opinion as LOAF)

- the navigation systems is too complex... why can I hit autopilot every time?
- the big suns in the system really suck... I would remove the suns ... good 'ol Privateer was better in that way...
- too much missions in the mission computer... I would think 5 missions are enough so you really need to chose one... if you have 20 or 30 missions then it get's boring because you don't have to wait for missions that really challenge you if you got easy ones...
- nav map is not "WC like"... can this be changed? The distance between nav points and the whole navigation system really needs lot of work!
- there seems to be an error with the range of the guns... I just hit an Orion with my Tarsus (2 meson blaster) that was more than 20000 away... (I heard the hit sound of the lasers) and so I was attacked by the Orion... can anybody confirm that error?

I think you should just fix the bugs and make the navigation and flight system better. Otherwise it is a great game!

...well I still got an old 486 PC and I still think the old Privateer is better... but it is very interesting to see what people can do...

... I think you are able to make this game equal to Privateer or even better... but that would still require lots, lots of work - and I don't think your team has this time.

The project itsself is really good up to know... and already sure consumed lots of free time... but you asked what to improve and this are my thoughts...

Alexander "Rylex" Grober
 

hellcatv

Swabbie
Banned
Thanks for your input.
We'll make the suns smaller.
Navigation is only prevented by asteroids and enemies within 15000 meters...
asteroids can be detected by looking around. Hostiles can be detected with the 'h' key. Sometimes bases can prevent your autopilot if you are hostile with that faction.
Yes, I agree the num missions available could be reduced... it's difficult though... people want insystem missions--and randomly generated missions may not all be insystem.
The nav map is not WC-like? what do you mean... just hit up and get to the sector view... or down for the system (this is with shift-m).
The distances between all nav points were specifically measured and triangulated from ingame experiments... there's no difference we know of...what's wrong with the nav points?
the ranges *appear* right...not sure how that could go wrong.

which "the bugs" are you talking about, asking us to fix.

It requires "lots and lots" of work you say? the things you suggested here are mostly implementation details, not much work.

How do you know about the time constraints of our team? ;-)
 

hellcatv

Swabbie
Banned
I'm very interested in changing controls to reflect users' needs. However... privateer remake has a few additional features... let me list the keys I changed--and maybe you can determine good locations for the keys ousting the priv keys:
Currently q,z,s,f are bound to being camera panning keys...this precludes shield reduction from being there, so that's been shoved over to i/shift-i
there's no automatic docking zone, so 'd' is needed for that, and hence 'r' needs to show the damaged screen (repair) rather then 'd'.
n and shift-n cycle through nav points, much like in earlier WC's...however this leaves cntrl-N or shift-M left for the nav map...which is somewhat undesirable, but I don't see how else to get around it without picking a less obvious "cycle through nav point" key. and you do that far more often than you pull up the sector map--even though the new one will include a sector search option.
The only other really odd oddities are some new keys like ] to get into your turret, because all the F keys have been bound to new camera views that exceed the power of those views in the original. (F5 = chase, F6 = pan/cinematic etc)
Also the 'off' key has now been replaced with an objective screen to help you accomplish missions--luckily shift-O can be bound to turning off the MFD.
eject cargo key will have the option of ejecting mission cargo or non mission cargo--this can be helpful to appease pirates... or avoid contraband searches...but you may not just want to eject that mission cargo, only your slaves.

'e' turns your computer to examine mode--clearly it shouldn't select targets..that's what 't' and shift't' are for...

the only key I could see changing is swapping 'i' to 's' but... that seems like overkill...and doesn't leave a good option for decent camera panning keys that you can use with your left hand.

If anyone has a good suggestion for simple key changes (edit vegastrike.config and search for bind--that's where the default keybindings are listed one by one)

the only real kicker-difference between the original is the good ole 'd' to dock key--but everyone, myself included, hates the auto landing zone...so what the heck.

I would also like to know what key bindings THREW the original privateers off..because the keys are as close to the original as I can remember...and I can't google up a chart here
 

hellcatv

Swabbie
Banned
so I've edited the keys a bit on my own copy and have set insert,delete,home,end to camera panning--this allows me to put 's' back where it belongs--as a shield reduction key.
Cntrl-N still brings up the map... and 'r' instead of 'd' shows the repair screen...but other than that I think it's pretty much like the original--any objections? any things I forgot
 

Rylex

Rear Admiral
@hellcatv

At first I really would like to say sorry about my "bad" English... it's difficult to say something in English if you think in German ;-) ok anyway...

- making the suns smaller or even some sectors without visible suns would be a very very good thing. I only remember in privateer the suns were simple images/sprites that were positioned on the background...

- about the navigation. When I tried the game I selected a nav point and the "AUTO" symbol was highlighted... then I pressed "A" and the autopilot started... when I was on my destination (I didn't know where I was) ... the "AUTO" symbol was still highlighted... so I pressed "A" again... ... and when I was at my destination again the "AUTO" was still highlighted... it means you can ALWAYS hit "A" ... well perhaps it was my fault...

- question: About the speed of the ships and afterburner speed: Will you use exactly the same speed as in original Privateer (for example: Tarsus 300kps without afterburner?)...

- question about the afterburner... can you buy an afterburner?? I had a Tarsus and when I pressed TAB I heard the sound of the afterburner but the speed didn't change!! ... and I don't think I was flying faster... so I would suggest either removing the sound if no afterburner is present.... or what's going on with the afterburner??

- I know it was posted before but I would recomment using the Original Privateer keyboard controls...

- About the missions: I mean you should only display 6 missions in the mission computer. It was cool back in 1994 with old Privateer if you landed on a base and HAD to choice one out of 6 missions or 1 out of 6 from Mercenaries or Merchants missions... the player needed to decide what to do... with too much missions it would be boring because you are NO longer happy if you always know your favorite mission will be in the mission computer. For making the game more interesting and people would need to search longer for their missions I would suggest reducing the mission number count... (my personal comment)

- I haven't played the game for hours... so I only had that bug with the Orion that could be hit with Meson blasters from 20000 away...

- the navigation map is more WC4 stylish I think... the nav symbols are too large in my personal opinion... I liked the old NAV computer from Privateer... a circle for a nav point... (blue for jumppoint) and square for bases... I would like to see a NAV computer like in orignal Privateer....

- I would need to do more testing again before talking about all the bugs. I know that some things really seemed like bugs when I tested the game but I would need to re-test this again. I had problems with the communication system as well... after talking to a Merchant... he suddenly attacked me... well I didn't make him angry with the things I said... that's for sure! :)

- I still was thinking about implement Military ships. I would suggest that if really anybody would want to buy such a ship he would need to buy it on a Pirate base. That would be OK I think ... it should cost lots of money... AND ... if you buy this ship you are an enemy of the Confederation AND Kilrathi... that means you can buy military ships but you will have more enemies. What do you think?

- can you really try to use the same ship speed settings for the ships as in original Privateer??

Anyway... Privateer Remake v.08 is already a great Privateer Revival!

Keep up the good work and it might get even better!!
If I know more things to tell you then I'll post it again.

Alexander "Rylex" Grober
 

hellcatv

Swabbie
Banned
all speeds are exactly like the original. There is always a sound when you press tab... it doesn't actually accelerate you faster or make your faster until you buy an afterburner at a base...the afterburner is in the misc category.
As for autopilot--ti's sometimes useful to press 'a' to orient yourself to the nav point :) this is why we allow it multiple times.

you must have hit '4' or something to get him mad...next time press 'c' before speaking so you can see your options--they are just like privateer
 

MamiyaOtaru

Spaceman
Rylex said:
... ... and when I was at my destination again the "AUTO" was still highlighted... it means you can ALWAYS hit "A" ... well perhaps it was my fault...
Well, almost ;) You can always hit auto unless there are enemies close by. Otherwise, why not. It doesn't get you any closer the second time.

The distance between nav points and the whole navigation system really needs lot of work!
?? Distances between nav points matches the distances in the original quite closely. And what is wrong with the nav system? Other than the symbols not being the same, which I don't view as a problem..

Anyway, perhaps we could continue this in another thread, this thread is really only supposed to have one request per person.
 

Wendy

Spaceman
I have to disagree here because. . .

Rylex said:
Heya everybody, . . .

. . . for those who don't know me... I worked with the WC Unknown Enemy project as ingame rendered video-scenes creator...

I've tested the Privateer Remake ver. 0.8 and my thoughts were the following...
(these are my opinions and I know that not everybody may think like I do...)

- First the very big question I would definitely remove Military ships from the buy menu. The player should not be able to buy them... this game is called "Privateer" remember... (I will not comment any further... I just have the same opinion as LOAF)

Alexander "Rylex" Grober

My hat is off to you and your team.

I am Nobody but a LUSER, but I LOVED and STILL PLAY the original game for that original feel.

I maintain a 486 JUST FOR THE ORIGINAL GAME.

I have managed to configure DosBox JUST FOR THE ORIGINAL GAME.

Yes, I LOVE IT that much.

Now,
As I've said in the past regarding remakes, they are the embodiment of the vision of the re-makers -- much as new Hollywood directors are to old movies.

Remakes are NOT the original, they are the embodiment of the recreator's vision.

The recreators/remakers have seen and enjoyed the original. They feel a need/want/desire to make the old new again.

That said, I -- a nobody with only the rights that my opinion give me to speak -- shall now argue a point with you -- a Somebody that really has a right to speak due to your contribution to the original.

Privateers DID sail military vessels.
They started out with civilian vessels, often as merchants with a modest to moderate gun layouts.

They took an oath with their government of choice and received a Letter of Marque that gave them the RIGHT to take on cargo and military ships of opposing governments.
Their "Prizes" were the cargo and the vessels themselves. Thus a French Privateer might be sailing a British Man-Of-War.

THEY WERE PRIVATEERS.

Legal Pirates.

Pirates that had been sanctioned by their governments to ply the shipping lanes to take on military and cargo vessels of the opposing government.

Being pirates at heart, they didn't always do things that the government wanted. They followed their own rules. As long as they didn't get caught, the government that gave them their letters of marque turned their heads to what actually went on.

Privateers seldom followed ANYONE'S orders but their own. Yes they might take on a mission for the government but they were not part of the government's military force. Though they often had military or military quality vessels and arms. Some even travelled in packs of three to nine ships.

Military ships SHOULD indeed be able to be obtained. The over rich can buy military style fighters today, OR even build their own. Where is the difference here in game?

I digress. . .

It isn't a matter of a P'ing match, I don't think anyone would survive that, nor does anyone want that.
It shouldn't be a matter of I'm right and you're wrong, either.

It's a remake. It isn't Origin's vision, it's the team that remakes the original's vision.

IT'S ONLY A GAME.

If these additions make the game more popular, what's the harm? It has already been decided to make it so that there will be a sacrosanct, original ships only option. Why make an issue of it?

IT'S ONLY A GAME.

Wendy
 

powell99

Aviation Junkie
hellcatv said:
PS: Flying coffin with potentially a tractor beam and a huge hold to boot--wonder what you could fit in there...hmmm

Well you could always fit other ships in there so you would not have to pay the shipping bill. Also you could have a small base of Operations
 
W

Wonk

Guest
Okay, so I'm going through the master_part_list, adding and tweaking descriptions, and for some reason some of the descriptions are cut off prematurely in Excel. Any clue why, and how I can get and manipulate the rest of the text without hunting through priv to find the commodity/ship/part/whatever?
 

hellcatv

Swabbie
Banned
you can edit the descriptions in a text editor...the master part list is pretty simple even for wordpad ;-) that way you won't get things cutoff

what rest of the text do you mean...I don't understand
 
U

Unregistered

Guest
Some of the descriptions in the master list are cut off prematuring in excel. For instance, I have this entry for the laser gun:

"@upgrades/laser.png@Though not a laser by any stretch of the imagination, due to its resemblance to the so called 'lasers' of classic games and movies of the previous millenium, the misnomer has stuck stronger than space rated epoxy. Cheap and utterly dep"

Yet, in game the remainder of that blurb is visible. Maybe it's just an excel thing.
 

hellcatv

Swabbie
Banned
Right... try editing the same file in wordpad...it may be easier to add descriptions
remember to keep them in quotes.

in excel you can try widening the length of a column--it's definitely visible in the free openoffice.org that I used to edit it
 

Wendy

Spaceman
Unregistered said:
Some of the descriptions in the master list are cut off prematuring in excel. For instance, I have this entry for the laser gun:

"@upgrades/laser.png@Though not a laser by any stretch of the imagination, due to its resemblance to the so called 'lasers' of classic games and movies of the previous millenium, the misnomer has stuck stronger than space rated epoxy. Cheap and utterly dep"

Yet, in game the remainder of that blurb is visible. Maybe it's just an excel thing.


I don't know how familiar you are with Excel, so please excuse me if you know this already. At the top of the column, if you CLICK and HOLD on the line between colums, you can drag the column width to get to the end of the line. If you run to the end of the screen, look at the bottom of the screen and you'll see a scroll bar. Scroll to the right and repeat the column with re-size. If it's cropped after that, then it isn't displaying the remaining characters due to some odd quirk of teh Excell spreadsheet programme you're using. I've seen one column run for pages.

You can copy the first word or two of the column you're interested in to your clipboard, open it in Wordpad or Word and past those words into the search box to find the section you're wondering about and look at the remainder of it there. If you use Word 2k they didn't check the box in VB 6 to allow copy and paste when they assembled the programme. You'll have to type the words manually into the search box.

If you already know this, PLEASE excuse this idiot's post.

Wendy.
 
W

Wonk

Guest
I knew that, but thanks anyway. The problem is with Excel, because it comes up just fine in wordpad. I'm off and running now; thanks guys.
 

hurleybird

Rear Admiral
I would return the view distance of the original privateer. Try to mimick the the nav map from the original, as well as better emulate the way the privateer radar's worked. Also, i would remove the suns.

In the original each system didnt feel as much like a solar system, and i prefer it that way.
 

hellcatv

Swabbie
Banned
without a sun there would be no light...unless we have a planet emit the light...
back then there was no lighting-- but nowadays you need to pick a direction--without a sun no direction makes clear sense...

we could just draw the sprite and no sun model
 

Floater

Spaceman
hellcatv said:
we take note :)
Floater, All of your requests could be done in notepad and/or excel

It's a matter of discussing balance with the team--the engine has all that support


Thanks for the response HellcatV

Is there a tutorial on how make these changes?

Given that my requests were so easy... I would suggest new missions. It seems that the current bounty missions are either Kilrathi with 1-5 escorts or 15-20. How about something inbetween. Let me guess... You can do this with a text editor...

I like the game as it is. The navigation system took some getting used to. I appreciate that you have added a 3D component to the maps but I doubt that this will add anything to the game. You could make the maps more complex by not having them flat but I don't think that would enhance the game. Thus, a 2D map is fine, simple and more consistent with the original.

I noticed a few people suggesting getting rid of suns. I was thinking that perhaps you could add a continous low intensity attack to any ship that gets within a certain distance of the sun. As you get closer the intensity rises. I guess what Im trying to say is if you are putting it in, give it a purpose or function.

Floater
 
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