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Where is the big update?


banzai
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I recall the "big update" being planned since before the release of the second demo, unless I'm mistaken. Maybe I am. I realize this is a volunteer effort and that people have lives, but still...that's kinda pushing it. Ah well, one cannot complain about stuff that's free. I guess in the absence of big updates, staff could do .plan updates or something...

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Barring a 'big update', would it be possible just to take inventory quickly and update the progress page? /that/ is what I'm interested in, is seeing how much more is done. And it doesn't require a "huge site update".

 

Remember, the second demo came out... nearly a year ago now. ;) And it had a first demo prior to that... :) I think people are getting riled because it's slowing down now, and won't have a demo for this year. Too bad you don't have time to bundle one up, if you did, all these people would probably have the grace to shut their traps about 'never getting finished' and other such bs.

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Well, a quick, quick general rundown of whats been happening over the summer (Most of this information you can gather from the .plan updates, I'm just spelling it all out here):

 

The next three levels are nearing beta as well as some good progress on a few others.

 

The music through level 12 is pretty much finished.

 

The port to the MP code is going steadily.

 

That is about it. Our biggest obsticle right now is the MP port. It's not easy but we have some very capable people working on it right now.

 

If things seem slow right now it is only because some members are busy with real life issues. Our webmaster just started his first year of university and our project leader got a new job requiring him to move cities. Others got busy with school/work (like me - music teacher, whoa!) but I can tell you a ton of progress was made over the summer.

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Benevolence could you upload a second music suite? I'm in love with the first release... you have no idea how often I listen to it hehe. Even one song, I'll take anything I can get!

 

 

*sigh* I suppose so. Sorry for the slow link. Can't say for certain how long the link will be up so get it while you can. Also note, this may not be the final version of that track. Enjoy!

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Wow that's great! =D

 

I loaded up Dark Forces again and was surprised to hear the difference.. the original midis (or whatever format they are in DF) sound so dull in comparison, even though I loved them back in the day. Is it your Roland card that makes it sound so good, or are you carefully choosing the instruments when you remix them?

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benevolence do you have the notes (sheet) of the music. Cause as soon as I have 1000 dollars I am going to buy Colossus from quantum leap I plan on making a really real version of the Dark trooper suite, then after that I am going to remix it. 8) :dtrooper::blaze6::launcher::band1

 

I love these things

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Answer to Question 1). Part of it is the Roland Module. The module I used for the mod is the Roland SCD-70. The MIDI files for Dark Forces were written with the original Roland Sound Canvas (SC-55 Patchset) in mind but was limited in that: A) They still needed to make it generic enough for playback on non-Sound Canvas synths/soundcards and B) The original SC-55 had only 16 channels and 24-28 voices of playback. My goal was to remix the soundtrack and make it sound better while still remaining true to the original Sound Canvas 'sound' as was intended. However I'm doing a lot of mixing/layering of instruments and in some cases use all 32 channels and 64 voices of polyphony to give it that extra full and rich sound. Plus I've carefully added some reverb which is missing from the original MIDI version (as well as adding a few things extra to align it more with the Williams score where appropriate).

 

As to whether or not I succeeded in staying true to the originals is up to each persons opinion. Eventually I'm going to make recordings of the original SC-55, AWE32, and FM synth versions (excerpts; not the whole thing) for comparison.

 

Answer to Question 2) No, I'm just working off the MIDI files. It wouldn't be that hard to turn the MIDI files into sheet music (NOTE: not hard but long and tedious) and I don't have any plans of doing that at this time.

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Wow, Ben, that's amazing. I might just be crazy, but I think that track has some indescribable bit of awesomeness added that makes it even better than all the versions of Dark Forces music I've heard before. That's definitely the best update we've had in a while. Keep up the good work!

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Have faith, faith has been rewarded with two demos so far, and it encourages the team. At least I think it encourages them.

 

Such achievements encourage the team. Sorry for being a skeptic but I must look at the situation realistically. This mod was started in 2002 (unfortunately, because LEC decided to milk the cash cow twice instead of deliver a solid hit the first time around, the mod had to switch to the newer game, thus burning valuable time). Three years have gone by and the team has produced only 3 completed maps, not to dismiss the great music and texture recreation. There are 14 maps in the game. Given that most of the resources are probably complete, it might take at least another 1.5 years to finish the whole thing off, given the size of the mod team. The JA community is already a small fraction of what it was to begin with, and is virtually nothing in comparison to the original JK community when it hit the two year mark. I find that the community might not be there when the DF Mod is completed.

 

I understand that the modders have lives. That's a good thing. That's more important. They shouldn't spend their lives on a mod.

 

Correct if I am wrong because I hope I am. I loved the mod but it seems to be going to slow to keep pace with the environment.

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What shall we do then? Stop everything? Or continue?

But you're right about the JO/JA community.

Newer games with newer engines appear,

and nearly no one is doing anything with older engines now.

We try to get as far as we can, but it takes ages indeed.

Perhaps one day ther'll be a Q5 or Unreal 3 DFMOD Mod ;)

But i don't think so, honestly.

Some game preferences change much over the years.

Me for example, i don't like to play those ugly monster games anymore.

I jut can't stand them. The degree of realism is still not perfect,

but it has reached regions that really cause bad nightmares.

And i don't want to have such "just for fun"...

Ok, i download demos and check them out, but not more.

 

Of course, matter of time counts, too.

I don't have anymore as much time as i had while sitting in school

or at university...

so really i have to chose carefully what i want to do and what not now :p

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It would be very disappointing if you stopped at this late date, after two demos. I know the big update is delayed again, as I mentioned before, an update to the progress page would probably be helpful. All these people are doomsaying because "most full conversions never get finished", but look back at the amount of time you've spent on it. The hours and hours that would be *wasted* if it weren't completed? And a lot of people still have JA, even if it isn't installed. Or could get it back cheaply at the store. If the DFmod is finished, it'd be worth it.

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I don't want this to die... Darnit, this is my dream job outside of real life, and I will not let this oportunity go to waste.

 

Testbase was going very fast, until... I ran into some new learning curbs, I got past them, had another great spot, and slowed down again, now that I am off a little vacation I deserved, I have ditched easygen terrain, and started crafting rock walls by hand. Even if this map gives me carpel tunnel by the age of 16, I will finish it, so I can proove to the world, I CAN MAP!!!

 

Then I will start Ramses Hed Docking Port, Cal-Seti, permitting Darth Linux lets me. Karrackoo has alot done on robotics, and I'm sure Salv can do somthing about the skeleton of a Nar Shaddaa, after the other three levels are out, I bet we will release the 6 level demo, then the next three maps are a breeze, we could make a 9 level demo, or we could just finish it.

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I wish I could help in some way, but I have no experience in any of the things here. The only computer programs I really know is AutoCAD, Autodesk Viz (about 90% the same as 3DSMAX so that may help but I don't own a copy) A bit of photoshop (very little) and a bit of Adobe Illustrator.

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I've found that the best way to gain experience with certain software is to just start using it and learn it as you go. That might just be how I learn best, but I can't see how you'd ever get anywhere if you let not having experience in something stop you from trying it. I mean, how would you ever start getting experience with something? Just find a tutorial or something and start playing around with the software; you'll quickly gain experience and either have found something you're good at or decide that your skills might be better used in another manner.

 

Speaking of joining the mod team, based on my current workload, I'm thinking it might actually be a possibility for me sometime. First, though, I'll have to finish a webpage that's a year and a half overdue, both to get it done and to prove to myself that I can actually stop procrastinating and work on stuff I like.

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