Author Topic: Y'all know the Dark Mod's been released, right?  (Read 5281 times)

Offline Doc_Brown

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Y'all know the Dark Mod's been released, right?
« on: October 18, 2009, 04:44:06 PM »
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Offline OrlopRat

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Re: Y'all know the Dark Mod's been released, right?
« Reply #1 on: October 18, 2009, 05:31:35 PM »
 Damn. This means I'll have to re-install Doom 3, doesn't it? Providing, of course, that I can figure out where the hell my copy of Doom 3 is.

   It must be here somewhere. I'll ask the cats, they probably know...


Reason for edit:  I have been informed that "warplefinglik" is not actually a word.

« Last Edit: October 18, 2009, 05:40:38 PM by OrlopRat »
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Offline Silver Sorrow

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Re: Y'all know the Dark Mod's been released, right?
« Reply #2 on: October 18, 2009, 09:47:19 PM »
Yaaaaaay! I was kinda stuck whilst composing my Mirror's Edge-inspired hate letter to EA, anyway. ("...blast you all to Hell..." was where I stopped. What could possibly come after that? Hmmm...now where did I put my copy of Dante's Inferno?)
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Offline Starfox

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Re: Y'all know the Dark Mod's been released, right?
« Reply #3 on: October 20, 2009, 03:05:22 PM »
Thanks for the heads-up Doc...

So... after reinstalling Doom 3, patching it to the latest then downloading and installing TDM I was finally able to play through the missions (only once for each... they are not very huge). So far it's pretty good stuff with nonetheless some probs. The top most is after blackjacking an opponent. It's not blackjacking in itself that is the problem but the body you have to carry around after that. It tends to get stuck in some places and I spent in one mission about 5 minutes to conceal a body while the same operation in Thief would have roughly cost me 30 seconds. I was lucky that no guard was around. Maybe it's just me or it's something to get used to with practice but all in all that doesn't really invite you to blackjack anymore. Sometimes it's easier to ghost to avoid all the trouble... I'd never thought of using "ghost" and "easier" in the same sentence but well... I get the feeling that in TDM blackjacking all the guards then conceal their bodies would be the real challenge  :lol:

My second personal issue (because I'm nitpicking) is bound to personal taste. I'm not really fond of the footsteps sounds they implemented. I always thought that the tip-tap shoes of Garrett were bad but there it's a whole new level. Anyway, none of the Thief games ever get the footsteps right so I guess we'll just have to get used to it.

Other than that it's almost a no fault. I had some framerate drops here and there. Nothing major but once again these are rather small missions. We would need some test in a real huge complex map (like return to the cathedral or LOTP to see how it affects the framerate). However I don't think we'll see a lot of rooftops maps because thanks to Doom, the sky is generally plain ugly as demonstrated in the training mission.

Mantling is a real pleasure though. It never felt so natural. Such a pleasure that I found myself mantling on everything I could climb on be it worth it or not (actually I did find some loot this way so you never know...)

There's a lot of potential there for some good old thiefy gameplay and it's just version 1.0 of TDM. More maps are on the way and more versions too I guess. Personally I can't wait for the undead   :evil1:


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Offline The Rogue Wolf

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Re: Y'all know the Dark Mod's been released, right?
« Reply #4 on: October 20, 2009, 09:07:12 PM »
Doom 3 doesn't have the best time with very large and complex areas, at least to my knowledge. It would take some tricky mapping to get sprawling areas to work in TDP. However, since Doom3 has been out for a good long while and there is a developed mapping community for it, I can't imagine it being Mission Impossible.

If they can give me a decent rooftop mission, I'll be happy. :onethumb:
"Choice one: we flank them using what military men called tactics, and what religious men call divine inspiration. Or, we charge at them head on screaming various obscenities, in what military men call bravery and religious men also call divine inspiration."

Offline The Rogue Wolf

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Re: Y'all know the Dark Mod's been released, right?
« Reply #5 on: October 21, 2009, 07:03:15 PM »
Okay! I've just finished Crown of Penitence. It was fairly interesting, and felt like a nice trip back to the world of Thief, except for a handful of issues.

- Yes, the body dragging does indeed suck. You can forget about cleanly sneaking a body through a doorway, and I had one KOed guy go absolutely spastic as I tried to drag him. Hopefully there's plans to implement carrying bodies over the shoulder like Thief.
- There's no music volume controls, which makes hearing lockpicking a real pain when there's some swell of dramatic music. I'm not sure if that can be fixed, as Doom 3 only has "main volume" and "ambient volume" controls. One possible solution: Quieter music.
- I did catch one guy walking in place. At least until I gave him a gentle cerebral massage with my blackjack.

Everything else I wasn't quite happy with- bascially their selection of sounds and voice acting- will probably be solved as the Mod grows in size and scope. But this is definitely an excellent first effort on an engine that wasn't built for this sort of thing.
"Choice one: we flank them using what military men called tactics, and what religious men call divine inspiration. Or, we charge at them head on screaming various obscenities, in what military men call bravery and religious men also call divine inspiration."

Offline Doc_Brown

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Re: Y'all know the Dark Mod's been released, right?
« Reply #6 on: October 22, 2009, 02:44:41 PM »
Quote from: The Rogue Wolf
Hopefully there's plans to implement carrying bodies over the shoulder like Thief.

Actually, you can.

The one thing the tutorial neglects to mention is the ability to "double use," as I call it, which essentially means that certain objects can be used a second time (with the use inventory item key) after you've picked them up with the frob/use key.  Bodies can be thrown over your shoulder, food can be eaten, and candles extinguished in this fashion.
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Offline Starfox

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Re: Y'all know the Dark Mod's been released, right?
« Reply #7 on: October 22, 2009, 05:28:33 PM »
Had I known the "double use" trick before, things would have been much simpler  ;D

Another thing for those who have an ATI card: switch off Catalyst AI before playing. The "sky" in TDM doesn't like it at all.


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Offline The Rogue Wolf

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Re: Y'all know the Dark Mod's been released, right?
« Reply #8 on: October 22, 2009, 08:06:29 PM »
Actually, you can.

The one thing the tutorial neglects to mention is the ability to "double use," as I call it, which essentially means that certain objects can be used a second time (with the use inventory item key) after you've picked them up with the frob/use key.  Bodies can be thrown over your shoulder, food can be eaten, and candles extinguished in this fashion.
And Dr. Emmett Brown to the rescue again! ;D I suppose their documentation is in beta, too. :-\ Ah well, I'll cut them a little slack.
"Choice one: we flank them using what military men called tactics, and what religious men call divine inspiration. Or, we charge at them head on screaming various obscenities, in what military men call bravery and religious men also call divine inspiration."

Offline bobdog

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Re: Y'all know the Dark Mod's been released, right?
« Reply #9 on: March 18, 2011, 09:15:46 AM »
As always, I'm a little late to the party, but I've been testing out the latest iteration, which is now at v1.04 of The Dark Mod and has made some significant changes from the first days. They have now created a TDM Install Manager, which then proceeds to download 1.7G of assets and resources.

About 35 FMs are now available, so there's been some growth in the offerings. And nicely, all you have to do is download the RAR/ZIP file and install that in your TDM FMs folder (under Doom 3's hierarchy).

However, the play is still extremely twitchy and still needs to be modified much more to be successful. The AI are super-ultra alert and can spot you from 40 feet away. They can also hear your every footstep from 20 feet away, so even when creeping, I couldn't actually blackjack anyone unless they were standing still. In the Thief series, you can follow along behind someone and KO them but not in TDM.

The lockpicking is also a pain in the toucas and although more realistic, it's not fun -- just a bother. And maybe that's what I'm feeling: the game is TOO realistic and not very fun to play.

So far, I've played about 5 maps and only one has been a nice experience. The first I tried, immediately had the cops on me because I guess I landed right in the middle of their donut convention, so they started chasing me all over the map, and even 10 minutes later when I was out of sight, they had not calmed down. Another was a hotel heist that took me 20 minutes just to get around a corner without setting off the AI because I was in the light for 2 seconds. The third was actually a nice Thief experience, as I was stuck inside a multi-level mine with haunts, but again the AI was just too damn alert.

Graphically, it is nice looking, but my sky spins around, so it looks like I need to turn off my Catalyst AI (whatever that is or does). A couple of stutters but nothing major. However, their "default" is WAAAAYYYY too dark, so I have to crank up the gamma and light. Of course, this doesn't reset itself when I come back to my desktop, so then IT is washed out, and the only way to change it is to reboot altogether. So still some issues there.

I've caught a few "glimpses" of Thief play, but overall, the maps seem more like a head-ache than fun, so I don't think I'll hold onto TDM in the long haul.

Offline Silver Sorrow

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Re: Y'all know the Dark Mod's been released, right?
« Reply #10 on: March 18, 2011, 09:54:24 AM »
I had a similar experience, but my tolerance was waaaaaaaaaaaay lower: I loaded up one of the most raved about missions; I walked about a foot and was immediately set upon by every guard in the map. "If this is the best mission yet," I thought, "they can shove this thing up their ass." I was not in a charitable mood that evening...nor am I ever, come to think of it. :realconfused:  They'll have to make it *exactly* like Thief 1 & 2 before I try it again.  :P
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Offline Starfox

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Re: Y'all know the Dark Mod's been released, right?
« Reply #11 on: March 18, 2011, 08:22:46 PM »
Quote
Graphically, it is nice looking, but my sky spins around, so it looks like I need to turn off my Catalyst AI (whatever that is or does).

Yes it has to be turned off so the sky stops spinning.

Catalyst AI is in fact a collection of drivers tweaks on a per game basis that AMD/ATI update at each driver release to make a game run faster or suppress a glitch in another game. Unfortunately, they cannot keep track of every mod out there and it appears that the specific tweaks they've done for Doom 3 have a weird effect on the way sky is implemented in TDM. NVidia also have their own thing similar to Catalyst AI but to my knowledge they don't officially allow user to disable it globally.

Rule number one when you have an ATI card: if a game behaves weirdly or has glitches try to turn Catalyst AI on or off first. Sometimes having Catalyst AI on solves the problem, some other times it's turning it off that solves it. In most cases though it is not needed (unless every fps you can squeeze out of a game counts for you) so it's safe to leave it disabled and only enable it if one of your games shows glitches, artifacts or behaves abnormally.

I'm not sure what are the plans of TDM team for the future... The mod was developed at a point where everybody thought that the Thief series was over. Now Thief 4 is on its way -- even though some things I've seen/read don't give me much hope to see it being a true Thief game. Anyway, yeah, in the mean time, TDM really needs improvements in specific areas. They got the settings OK, they got the design OK but as far as blackjacking, stealth and AI go there are definitely room for improvement (even TDS didn't get the blackjacking that wrong and it was already awful).

With that being said I'm not sure that it was the original intend of TDM to completely emulate Thief in every aspect. For a start, stealth has always been much more reduced for your TDM character compared to Garrett's level of stealth and it was clearly a design choice; complete stealth can only be achieve with no light AND crouched -- If they wanted it another way they could have easily rectified it by modifying some parameters so the stealth was more stealthy...


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Offline bobdog

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Re: Y'all know the Dark Mod's been released, right?
« Reply #12 on: March 18, 2011, 08:47:14 PM »
I don't necessarily mind the stealth parts being more realistic. What I DO mind is the insanely accurate AI that never calms down. It's like you get one shot to go through a mission and if you screw up, you might as well start fresh. And maybe that's what TDM is supposed to be -- an insane ghosting challenge that only the top tier of Thief players can even attempt.

But it's not fun.

Offline bobdog

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Re: Y'all know the Dark Mod's been released, right?
« Reply #13 on: March 20, 2011, 02:15:53 PM »
I tried to play through about a dozen of the 35 or so TDM FMs and just wasn't feeling it: the over-the-top AI, the inability to blackjack, the extreme lockpicking, the poor enemy model designs, the uninspired map layouts, the seeming impossibility to complete some maps, and finally the overall lack of what I really play games for ... fun. It just never gelled with me and I figure I don't need the aggravation.

Don't get me wrong -- I'm extremely impressed with what a group of amateurs have accomplished with the Doom 3 engine. Hopefully, I haven't lost my love of Thief and that is unintentionally biasing me. To know for certain, I'm going to do a new playthrough of Thief Deadly Shadows and see. If I can't regain my original love of the game ... I'll be infinitely sad!  :'(