Tutorial and Information Requests

If you feel like you're up to the challenge of building your own Ages in Blender or 3ds Max, this is the place for you!

Re: Tutorial and Information Requests

Postby J'Kla » Tue Jan 08, 2019 3:45 am

By way of an aside "HAPPY NEW YEAR"

As it happens I have a bit of time on my hands so I have been re-reading my threads of interest and realised I have been lax in posting on this one.

I did recently add a post about Meshroom Photogrammetry in the Plasma development section I feel this could be useful in creating game assets from real world objects.

I do want to revive some things about "in game journals" I did make some progress but I am aware that while I can embed complete pages I have yet to get to the stage where I can add a small image into a block of text on a page.

This may now be possible with the new release of Korman 0.07 I obviously need to refresh my knowledge.

I am also aware that I need to get up to speed with some sort of puzzle creation method and I (and this is very much a personal I) would like to see some sort of node solution to creating variable based puzzles that can use a node solution.

Some time around March I hope to be getting a new Laptop that will allow me to explore the new release of Blender 2.8 and while I am aware that there could be issues having Korman play with this (Please feel free to correct this assumption if it is wrong).

I am sure my older equipment will still be using Blender 2.79 and as Blender has lots of older versions available I do not see 2.79 falling off the radar any time soon.

I also have a new shared workstation available that has a halfway decent graphics card where I plan on mixing the Blender Korman experience, The Dirtsand, with the Meshroom Photogrammetry one.

I am going to spend some time reading and the MOSS requests appear to be dead in the water again. I am not worried about this because at this time dirtsand more than full-fills my testing requirements

I suppose this is a fresh call for a tutorial on the Node Puzzle front as all of the other requests have been addressed in some form.
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Re: Tutorial and Information Requests

Postby Deledrius » Wed Jan 09, 2019 3:39 am

J'Kla wrote:I suppose this is a fresh call for a tutorial on the Node Puzzle front as all of the other requests have been addressed in some form.


That kind of thing, while it would be amazing, is not remotely inside the scope of any of our current projects. A drag-and-drop interface for Python scripting is a huge task, and honestly not really worth the effort for the sort of simple interaction it sounds like you want to accomplish. I would recommend learning Python and learning to write simple scripts to add interactivity to your Age that way. If you have a specific puzzle in mind, you'll have better luck finding someone to assist you in that task than a general-purpose solution like Scratch.
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Re: Tutorial and Information Requests

Postby Sirius » Wed Jan 09, 2019 12:30 pm

Deledrius wrote:That kind of thing, while it would be amazing, is not remotely inside the scope of any of our current projects. A drag-and-drop interface for Python scripting is a huge task, and honestly not really worth the effort for the sort of simple interaction it sounds like you want to accomplish.

Are you both thinking about generating Python scripts from Node Trees using visual scripting ? Because now that I'm thinking about it, that's not required at all IMHO... ;) I don't have a proof of concept to backup what I'm saying, but I'm pretty sure we CAN already code pretty much any basic or intermediary puzzle using the current Korman.

Korman's Node Trees allow us to hook inputs (detectors), outputs (animations & responders) and Python scripts. We also have a few global scripts (xAgeSDLDoSomething) which allow us to interact with SDL variables - some can even act as simple logic gates (or we could just write a bunch more global scripts if required).

This is enough to do the following 3 operations:
  • detect click/animation event → set SDL variable
  • if <several sdl variables to true> → set other variable
  • on variable set to true → run animation or responder.

Granted, this isn't enough to do advanced mathematical calculus, but has any of Plasma's most "complex" puzzles like Kadish's or Laki'Ahn ever required it ? Besides, the advantage of nodes is that you don't have to deal with complex API commands like registering for notifications, etc.

What do you think ? I might have forgotten a few details, but it sounds reasonable from what I can say.


On the other hand, what would be really useful (aside from more global scripts) is make the node trees a bit more newbie friendly. They are already light-years away from messy undocumented AlcScript or Plasma's clusterfuck of modifiers, but I think there might be a few ways to improve them more...
  • Display a warning when a node is missing a mandatory input/output. This way people know when it makes sense to omit an output.
  • Rename a few nodes so their purpose is easier to understand. I'm mostly thinking about Responders and OneShotMods. Although some really good noob-friendly documentation might work too.
  • Possibly implement a way to make "generic" node trees. By this I mean treat each node tree as an actual node taking inputs/outputs. This would allow you to "script" the behavior for journey clothes, doors etc once, then reuse them throughout the whole Age by simply changing the inputs. A bit tricky to do, but this would be a massive help.
  • Add a "comment" node, which wouldn't do anything, just improve readability when sharing node trees.

Once again, I haven't thought the whole of it through, so I'd like to know what you think about it :P
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Re: Tutorial and Information Requests

Postby Tweek » Wed Jan 09, 2019 2:39 pm

This would go a long way to improving fan Ages and increasing the amount with puzzles in. I think puzzles are the next step for my Ages, I'm tired of them being pretty lore places with little to no interaction. They're getting boring.

That said I have sketched up a rough outline for a tiny simple Age that I want to start building with Korman. The on going snafu with the door in Fehnir's House is putting me to the end of my patience with PyPRP.
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Beneath: Ages of Tweek - FB Age Dev Page.
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Re: Tutorial and Information Requests

Postby Sirius » Sat Jan 12, 2019 6:17 am

Tweek wrote:I think puzzles are the next step for my Ages, I'm tired of them being pretty lore places with little to no interaction.

Personally I've always found it incredibly hard to come up with a good puzzle idea in the first place :P

Tweek wrote:The on going snafu with the door in Fehnir's House is putting me to the end of my patience with PyPRP.

I've always had a hard time with setting things up in AlcScript... I often resorted to editing the PRP afterwards, by manually writing objects and compiling them with PRCC. Doesn't mean it was any easier though :lol:


Anyway... I think I'm going to have a look at providing a few example node trees (with accompanying .blend file) so that people can have templates for a few basic interactions. Assuming my laziness doesn't get the better of me :lol: Here is a small list of things I think would be worth covering (from easiest to hardest):
Show Spoiler


This should keep me busy for a good while, and eventually allow people to understand how to use nodes to come up with their own puzzles.
Don't hesitate if you have other suggestions. I'm not going to cover pickable objects, UIs or really advanced logic like wall climbing ala Gahreesen (those are too complex to be done with nodes). But basic interactivity is usually fine.
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Re: Tutorial and Information Requests

Postby Aloys » Sun Jan 13, 2019 6:43 am

I cannot approve this enough. Decent puzzles is what is missing most from fan Ages. (well, that and good lighting, but that's a different topic). We mostly have the tools to do this, but really good documentation is still lacking. (because it's quite a lot of work in itself). Korman is a great step in that direction, but I guess part of it is still quite obscure and a few basic examples would really help. :)
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