Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 1 Alternate endings?
04-25-2011, 07:05 PM
I've been working on my mission, and I find that I have a problem I hadn't expected.

I created a dialog with an enemy commander that can go two ways. In the first, you say you can't leave the area, and a battle ensues (you transition to the battle map). In the second, you're supposed to agree to leave.

However, I find that even when I choose the second option I still transition to the battle. How do I get the mission to end following the dialog?
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 2
04-25-2011, 07:16 PM
You don't.

Branching missions are very hard to pull off in the Foundry right now and require being designed from the ground up around the limited choices possible to show branching.

I wish missions could end after a dialogue or the wrong slip of the tongue could lead to combat later but it's fairly linear so far.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 3
04-25-2011, 07:26 PM
I've been trying to just transition them back to sector space, but that doesn't work either. It's rather disappointing. I wanted the player to have some CHOICES to make that actually affected the mission's course.

Very disappointing.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 4
04-26-2011, 12:22 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mojo View Post
I've been trying to just transition them back to sector space, but that doesn't work either. It's rather disappointing. I wanted the player to have some CHOICES to make that actually affected the mission's course.

Very disappointing.
The best you can do is artificially create less desirable routes where combat would happen or have lengthy dialogue trees that vary dramatically (but, obviously, the dialogue would be self-contained, you couldn't have choices in that dialogue tree affect future conversations directly).

Here's one example of "branch" mission i fudged during closed beta:
  • You break into a Klingon Interrogation Facility on Rura Penthe.
  • You officers note that you can:
    • go across the ridgeline in the dense snow (and try not to fall off the catwalks into the mobs below) or
    • take the direct "spray and pray" approach through the valley.
  • I created a sufficiently large volume to exit out of that players could either exit through the roof or ground level entrance to the facility (cleverly placing rocks to prevent entry through non-sensical areas)

It had the illusion of choice (but no branching objectives). Players got to choose how they entered the facility but, nevertheless, had to enter it somehow.

Does that make sense? It's not unlike a modern FPS where you can do the stealth option or the combat option (killing the KDF patrols wasn't an objective but it's one players would assume if they wanted to enter the facility through the valley)
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 5
04-26-2011, 12:28 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Darren_Kitlor
The best you can do is artificially create less desirable routes where combat would happen or have lengthy dialogue trees that vary dramatically (but, obviously, the dialogue would be self-contained, you couldn't have choices in that dialogue tree affect future conversations directly).

Here's one example of "branch" mission i fudged during closed beta:
  • You break into a Klingon Interrogation Facility on Rura Penthe.
  • You officers note that you can:
    • go across the ridgeline in the dense snow (and try not to fall off the catwalks into the mobs below) or
    • take the direct "spray and pray" approach through the valley.
  • I created a sufficiently large volume to exit out of that players could either exit through the roof or ground level entrance to the facility (cleverly placing rocks to prevent entry through non-sensical areas)

It had the illusion of choice (but no branching objectives). Players got to choose how they entered the facility but, nevertheless, had to enter it somehow.

Does that make sense? It's not unlike a modern FPS where you can do the stealth option or the combat option (killing the KDF patrols wasn't an objective but it's one players would assume if they wanted to enter the facility through the valley)
Actually, I used that on the first groud part of the mission I wrote. Your officers advise you you might be able to get by without engaging the enemy at all.

I often design missions that way. Combat should be a means to an end, not an end in itself (unless you're Klingon).

Well. I suppose I'll have to shelve futher work on the mission for now until they provide me with tools to do it right.


I can't help feeling like this is ALSO unfinished on release. There's so many basic tools the Foundry just doesn't have, like ambushes, allies that will move with you, and so on. They really need to take a long look at the Architect system in City of Heroes. It's FAR better made, if you ask me.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 6
04-26-2011, 12:56 AM
it is possible, but very tricky to do.

the main story has to end with the same action/encounter,pop up dialogue etc. that cant change. if you want it to be neutral set it as a reach marker to a door or a door tied to a click object.

but you can drop an optional dialogue onto the map, attach it to a reach marker or object for example. have the fail condition be the peaceful solution (afterwards you just fo to the door and finish) and the succeed solution spawn an encounter.

you can then attach another dialogue to spawn after the encounter has finished and give it some relevant text.

copied from another thread as a very simple example i made.

create a new dialogue from the dialogue tab.
select the map you want from the list.
make the dialogue branch. so do you want a fight - yes or no.
set yes to succeed and no to fail.
drop a reach marker onto a map (not a story one, just from the specials tab).
set the dialogue to become visible on component reached in the state/trigger tabs.
set the object to be the reach marker on the map.
then drop an npc group on the map.
set that to become visible when component completes.
select the dialogue box as the component.

you will now have a situation where when you reach the marker the dialogue box will appear. you are faced with a question of having a fight. if you select yes, the dialogue box completes and an npc group spawns and you have a fight. if you select no, the dialogue box fails and nothing spawns.

by be clever with the text you can make it look like option A leads to a combat situation, and option B lead to a diplomatic situation. By playing around with it you can also make stuff chain.

you can be even more complex with having stuff appear and disappear depending on your choices but it can get quite complex.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 7
04-26-2011, 01:30 AM
I see that Captain Revo already posted how to accomplish this, but maybe my explanation is a bit more in-depth. I'm not sure I agree this is necessarily that tricky, it's just a bit more involved.

---

You can only do this by staying on the same maps using components instead of objectives. Instead of having them transition to a battle map, you'll need to have the battle on the map you're on already. Or if that is the wrong map (for example if you're on the ground and want it in space), then you'll need to transition to the other map first (regardless of whether the player chooses to fight).

Then follow these steps for the confrontation:

1) Have the dialogue where the commander tells you to leave and following that set an objective to a reach marker where you leave the system. Set the objective to read "Leave the System (Optional: Engage the enemy forces)".

2) Set a dialogue that will occur after the enemy commander's forces are defeated (set it to display on component complete and then select the enemy forces as the component). That dialogue will contain the alternate ending where you choose to defeat the commander's forces rather than leave.

Now there are two ways you can handle the engagement. Either way you're going to want to place the commander's ship as part of an enemy group, not as an NPC contact. That way it can be engaged in combat instead of just sitting there while everyone else fights.

3a) The easy way is to spawn the enemy commander's forces a little bit away, out of aggro range. The player can choose to engage them by flying over to them and attacking.

3b) The harder, but potentially better way, is to place a box of invisible wall talls around the the enemy commander's forces (be sure to set the "Y" value to -25 as otherwise the invisible wall bottom is at 0 and can easily be flown underneath). Put them close so it's like a stare down from one of the ST episodes (think of one of the TNG episodes where the Enterprise is staring down a couple of Romulan Warbirds).

Now, have the dialogue where he tells you to leave. Have the option where you agree to leave, and then instruct the player to fly to the mission exit objective. Set this option to end with a failed result. This will cause the dialogue to be minimized, and not complete. Now, set the dialogue branch where you refuse to leave, and have this one set to successful complete the dialogue.

Set the invisible walls so that they will be set to hidden upon completion of the dialogue. That way if the player selects the confrontational route, the dialogue will complete, the walls will disappear and the commander's forces will immediately attack. If the player chooses to leave, the dialogue is minimized, he heads for the objective and it's mission over. In the latter case, the player still has the option to change his mind if he wants as the dialogue will not completely disappear.

---

I believe that should result in close to what you want, albeit you can't actually transition to another map, you have to already be on the map.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 8
04-26-2011, 02:12 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mojo View Post
I can't help feeling like this is ALSO unfinished on release. There's so many basic tools the Foundry just doesn't have, like ambushes, allies that will move with you, and so on. They really need to take a long look at the Architect system in City of Heroes. It's FAR better made, if you ask me.
I prefer this over CoH's Architect System, at least the Architect System CoH launched initially.

Waypoint behaviors and over cutscene-style stuff is apparently slated for development. The tools honestly could be held up for another year to wait for all the bells and whistles: i.e. PvP Support, Fleet Starbase Support, Collaboration Support, Custom interior Support, Shared Instace/Zones, etc.

I mean, people complained that it was released a few months into Season 3. Imagine if they had waited until everything I described was added. People would be ragequitting by now. Better to have the basics out there and polished, so the masses can test it then pile it on all at once (and be very buggy)
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 9
04-26-2011, 03:28 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mojo View Post
I can't help feeling like this is ALSO unfinished on release. There's so many basic tools the Foundry just doesn't have, like ambushes, allies that will move with you, and so on. They really need to take a long look at the Architect system in City of Heroes. It's FAR better made, if you ask me.
thats why its still in beta. look at the right hand side of the screen Beta 0.5.

its not finished but as usual they are allowing us to help shape it development with feedback, and if they waited until it was finished we would have to wait another 6 months or so. the tools are good enough now. hardly perfect but good enough when you know the tricks of the foundry.
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