Category: Rant

Total conversion, partial conversion, mod, map?

gb recently published a very childish rant about why RemakeQuake/RMQ was not covered at Quaddicted. He went on a huge hyperbole, steering well clear of the actual issue at hand but instead insulting me deeply. He even went so far as to plaster an image with “Stop” signs. He and I are german, german government planned to put such signs infront of websites related to child abuse. I gave him some time to cool down and reconsider his accusations but the post is still there.

So, now hear me, the censor, the abuser of monopoly.

Too long; won’t read: Quaddicted focuses on Quake singleplayer releases that do not drastically change the game. RemakeQuake drastically changes the game and does not feel like the original Quake. Thus RemakeQuake has no place at Quaddicted.

Read on if you are interested in the background:

Since the dawn of user generated content for Quake there has been trouble categorising it. Let’s try it ourselves for “maps” and “mods/conversions”.

It could be modifications.
For example a weapon’s damage was changed, a monster’s behaviour was modified or things like that. Those are rare, I actually cannot think of any mods that are purely modifications in this sense.

It could be additions.
For example a monster or weapon was added, additional functionality in terms of the environment, special effects and the like.

The scope of change is different for each release. Some try to introduce small changes to the game world, enhancing the original idea with tailored content. Others use the engine, content and code at hand to create completely new worlds or gameplay mechanics. Quake has been turned into a racing game, into a real-time strategy game, into side scrollers.

So far this should be without controversy but a simple collection of facts. Controversy arises once we try to divide mods into two groups: partial and total conversions.

idgames2 says

-= partial_conversions =-

Quake add ons that change at least two of the following
aspects: levels, graphics, sounds, Quake C, but do not
(yet) qualify for a ‘total conversion’.

Examples from idgames2/partial_conversions that are listed at Quaddicted: Beyond Belief, Abyss of Pandemonium, Zerstörer. But there are also things like starwars, airquake, James Bond 007, that are adding drastic changes to Quake and do not fit into the Quake universe.

-= total_conversions =-

Attempts to convert the look, feel and gameplay of Quake
by converting _all_ aspects of Quake (graphics, sound, levels
and Quake C).

Among many others this directory includes burnnman, 007 again, atf, fantasy quake, quakerally.

By the idgames2 definition you can have partial conversions that do not feel like the original Quake and you can have total conversions that absolutely do so. It is a technical differentiation. You could make it more strict You could call everything that changes anything a partial conversion and releases that do not include anything from Quake a total conversions. That would not be even less useful. Also, this particular issue (PC vs TC) does not really matter here. Our issue is distinguishing what still feels like Quake (in terms of singleplayer maps) and what does not, because that is what this site is about. What is appropiate and what is too much change?

Most mods from the #qc/i3d crowd change the gameplay a lot or are code-only releases (no new maps) so those do not qualify. func focuses on Q1SP, so usually things posted there, get posted here. There might be some quite obscure maps, but you still battle the same enemies with the same armoury and mechanics. There might be some borderline mods but I tried to focus on ones that still feel like Quake to me. It obviously is a subjective feeling, it is impossible to do this on a technical basis. Maybe it is just new gameplay mechanics, small changes (think of ladders, rotating elements), new enemies, that add to the existing rules. Maybe it is some tiny change that changes the whole game.

Nehahra does the former. It builts upon the Quake base and (apart from the idiotic monster strafing) introduces new lovecraftian additions. The main gameplay mechanics are undamaged and it generally feels like the original game.

Hellsmash (recent example #1) fundamentally changes the game. All weapons and enemies are new. Some core gameplay is alive but the rest is a whole different game.

RMQ (recent example #2) fundamentally changes the game. It is easier to list what has not been changed. Actually the only thing I can think of from the top of my head are walking speed and jumping height, anything else? I am serious about this, this is not supposed to be some lazy attack.

So Nehahra is here, but Hellsmash and RMQ are not.

Since currently I can not be more lenient about this, should I instead be more strict? Should I censor remove releases that slipped in earlier or were added because I personally felt they were appropiate or were I was asked nicely (atf, nsoe, e1m1red, etc)?

This ultimately leads to gb’s main accusations, me, Spirit, controlling what gets added to Quaddicted, abusing its alleged monopoly and censoring things I do not like. I hope I could make it clear how I tried to focus this site on a special kind of Quake releases.

Quaddicted once was meant to be fully user-driven but no-one really cared. Some awkward content management systems were used and user contribution was sparse. In the end I tried programming things myself, controlling content with a strong hand and whine so people like negke or erc would do a lot of excrutiating work for it. And that put us where we are now. Having one’s release posted and hosted at Quaddicted is a privilege, not a right.

It originally started as “Quakeblog” on which I tried to collect news about everything Quake. Why? Because there was no central hub. Then it became about hosting map zip files. Why? Because there was no central archive. We now have a wonderful collection that allows people to easily download Quake singleplayer map files without any restrictions or signup. I wish the multiplayer communities had something like this. And even more so, the modding community.

As I mentioned in a previous post, I recently pondered opening Quaddicted to all kinds of mods (no, no user would be able to upload) but that task seems impossible to me. How we could categorise mods, handle special requirements, filename issues and different compression methods?

Quake done 100% Quickest

Seeing the internet go crazy over Quake done 100% Quickest is nice but seeing those tasteless graphics and people praising them makes me sick and sad. What’s the appeal?

02.01.2011 in Rant | 6 Comments »

Please do not use Darkplaces :-(

Just when I started growing comfortable with Darkplaces and thought it would be fine to play with it, I discover yet another great gameplay fix. You can simply walk over the moving platforms on DM2. No more need to jump, there is no danger at all.

darkplaces_gameplayfix_dm2.avi (5 Megabytes, XviD and MP3 in AVI)

That is sv_gameplayfix_stepwhilejumping. It is 1 by default, because obviously it was a bug that you could fall into that lava pool and those platforms were only decoration.
Thanks to Sajt for mentioning this variable.

Edit: Wait, is it? I set it to 0 and I can still shamble over those platforms like a stroller on a sugar rush.

27.08.2010 in Rant | 7 Comments »