making weapons

an actual plee for help

the rambler is back, with an actual problem.

i was buzzing around for a while on the internet, until i found "star trek nova: the final frontier". i downloaded it and started playing, everything was fine. because this was only the demo, there were only 2 ships and 4 outfits, i decided that seeing as i couldn't have the full version, i would make the demo a bit more comfortable, i tried to add photon torpedoes to the ships weaponry. everything was fine so far.

i found a picture of a photon torpedo that i would use to make my weapon, everything still fine at this point. i made the weapon part of the weapon without problems, but then i uploaded the file as a "pict" into evnew, i then added a "spin" resource, which i linked to the "pict", i then told the weapon to use that "spin" as it's appearance. then things went downhill. i fired up ev nova, thinking my torpedo would work and look as i had intended it to. gasp terror strikes!!! an evil error message appeared infront of my eyes, it said "error loading sprite (then my picture name, then a very long string of numbers)". i clicked OK and carried on, but gasp terror struck again!!! another evil message saying "ev nova has encountered an error, and must now close" (i cant remember the actual wording, it was something like "erm... cant load your sprite dude, im gonna go ahead and shut myself down now") at which point ev nova closed. i checked my modified plugin to see if i could fix this, but everything i had added had dissapeared gasp again!!! help!

if you need more detail do say.

the extra weapon was going to be fairly good, it would have looked like a photon torpedo, homed in, taken 50 units of energy, and most importantly done almost as much damage as a polaris torpedo. oh yeah, i also changed the phaser type x to look and act more like a phaser, it traveled further, took time to reload, and was more red than its original (a strange orange colour... orange mutters under his breath about the colour "orange" and its evil friend, the error message)

as my final statement... help!

This post has been edited by a squirell : 24 May 2007 - 01:29 PM

I suggest posting in the EV Developer's Corner web board.

I’ve moved this over to the EV Developer’s Corner forum.

The first thing to check is whether you’ve entered the right ID numbers for your two PICT resources (sprite and mask) in the spďn resource. If that’s all right, check the dimensions: if your spďn resource says that the PICT is a 6x6 grid of 10x10-pixel sprites (for example), the PICT needs to be 60x60.

First of all, I highly suggest making the torpedo image an rleD even if it is only one frame - for some reason Nova seems to choke trying to make spins from picts. Next make sure that all the ID numbers are correct like David said. It might take some research and basic math skills to figure out what numbers go with each resource (it took me several tries and a lot of looking at my debuglog before I figured it out). Hope this helps 🙂 .

Nonesense, Nova can make a spin from a PICT resource perfectly well without any side effects.

True, but with PICTs there's more chance of it choking on incorrect values. RLEs store enough information about themselves such that the only field Nova uses from a spin is the SpriteID (meaning spins are rather redundant). You can fill out the remaining fields with random data and Nova won't run any differently. The same applies to all MaskID, XSize and YSize fields in shans.

@guy, on May 25 2007, 05:34 PM, said in making weapons:

True, but with PICTs there's more chance of it choking on incorrect values.

Not to mention that the EV Nova engine’s ability to use PICT sprites received very little testing, since the standard scenario doesn’t do it.

Well there's been enough testing since by developers to show that it does all work perfectly well (unless you're running 1.0.9). But that's no excuse for using them 🙂

This post has been edited by Guy : 26 May 2007 - 04:01 PM

back again, now im rather confused.

1.david arthur's post
does the actual picture need to be 60x60, or can the picture be any size as long as the pict resource says its 60x60 pixels? (when i think about it that statement probably makes no sense, im not sure, im just some guy who cant wait for the TC to come out so i dont have to fiddle with the files any more)

2. david arthur's post again
what does a mask do, how do i make one, and is it really needed?(i have a vague idea that it is used for shadows when a ship turns round, and maybe for when a ship is ionized, but other than that, not a clue). when i think about it i probably dont want a mask, but i might still need something to fill the gap.

3. ant'iglias II's post
um... it should be rather simple to figure out the numbers, unless theres something blazingly obvious (or not obvious at all) that i haven't noticed, or haven't realised. i thought it would be just, look at which number my rled came up as, and type that into the "image" box in the weap resource.please explain what you meant (unless you haven't a clue either, in which case i might just give up completely and wait for the TC to come out, which should happen in 3 months to 10 years time)

4.guy's post (the first one)
im assuming that the actual image in the rled (whatever that is) is called the rle (whatever that is). all the last part meant to me was "it doesn't matter what you put in those fields" (which goes against what david said, that in the x size and y size fields, you would have to put in 60 and 60 respectively (unless i've got that wrong too! im soooo confused!!!!))

5.guy's post (the second one)
im not using 1.0.9, im using 1.0.10 (or whatever) and i was trying to use a pict,
WOULD SOMEONE PLEASE JUST EXPLAIN TO ME IN SIMPLE LANGUAGE WHAT THE **** IS GOING ON!!!! (note, i didnt actually swear there, but i wanted to, and this statement would only make sense if ambrosia had some sort of blocking system)

look at my picture, imagine how many brain cells that drunk squirell has, now explain the topic to me as if you were trying to make that squirell understand.

This post has been edited by a squirell : 27 May 2007 - 11:50 AM

@a-squirell, on May 27 2007, 10:46 AM, said in making weapons:

(note, i didnt actually swear there, but i wanted to, and this statement would only make sense if ambrosia had some sort of blocking system)

Two words have been censored by Ambrosia to the best of my knowledge: ###### and ######. Any questions?

@a-squirell, on May 27 2007, 10:46 AM, said in making weapons:

look at my picture, imagine how many brain cells that drunk squirell has, now explain the topic to me as if you were trying to make that squirell understand.

I'd give up.

if i was in a bad and grumpy mood (which i may be, im getting a headache from... um must be 10 hours now of continous computer use) i would say something like "ha ha very funny", if i were in a good mood however (which i am in as i am listening to some of my favourite 8 bit music (a type of electronic music, made from the sound chips of old games consoles, see this website 8 bit people's discography. i suggest you go for the album called pioneer, by she, and the track called xinon from the album moonlight sympathy)) then i would say "ha ha very funny", the difference is i would mean it.

but seriously, i am very very confused about this weapon picture thing. wouldn't it be easier for everyone if someone made an application that just said "ok, what do you want this weapon to do" in very simple terms, so that everyone could make plugins with very little effort. if you employed some people from... microsoft for example you would be doomed, they would be more interested in creating 16 billion lines of code just to get your toaster to turn on when you send a 15 billion line segment of code through your wifi, which takes another 57 billion lines of code to set up for this burst message.

i am on the verge of giving up. actually the verge was quite some way behind me, i left the pavement of "i want to do this", crossed the road of "im not too bothered", went through the neighboorhood of "not bothered, do it if you want" and i am now about to go across the state line of "stuff it, ill just watch TV". i nearly got picked up by the bus of "yeah! cmon! you can do it!", but i managed to dodge it. nearly got run over by the truck of "give up, do something, earn some money or something so you can buy a PS3 and ratchet and clank: future tools of destruction", but i was shoved out of the way of the truck by Arnold Schwarzenegger, who then jumped onto the truck and tried to shoot its driver (do not ask why arnold was patrolling my head, looking for good things to do, i've not a clue either and im just writing this because it appealed to me at the time)

This post has been edited by a squirell : 27 May 2007 - 02:03 PM

1. The actual size of the pict depends on the size of the weapon sprite. Otherwise really big ships and other sprites would look like a few giant pixels.

2. The mask is important. It determines the collision area. To make one, open your sprite thats been pieced together in it's grid and select the entire black area. Then invert your selection, which should select all copies of the sprite. Now turn them completely white. Now, you have a mask. I recommend using Enrle or Mission Computer's make rle utility to create the rle resources and associated shans/spins (in the case of weapons, the latter), which do require the mask.

3. ID numbers are the...well...ID of the resources. All resources start at 128 in their respective fields and go up from there. Spins need to point to the approperiate PICT/rle resources (the latter takes precedence in the case of overlap). And then weapons need to point to the approperiate spin. Note that in the weapon field, its numbers start at '0' for pointing, where 0 = 128.

4. For rle resources (rleD and rle8), those values are stored within the resources themselves, so you don't need to put them in (but it never hurts to be safe). PICTs require the fields to be filled out properly. And again, remember that rle resources will take precedence over PICTs of the same ID.

5. Since not everyone upgrades from some reason, some people are still using 1.09 and even earlier. 1.09 had numerous bugs with PICTs, which are fixed in 1.0.10. Since you're using 1.0.10, you don't need to worry.

thanks josh, that made the mud quite a bit clearer. (super josh tiger heart saves the day once again! whether it is with plugs, or with simplified answesr to some confusing topics, josh always pulls through! hooray for josh!!!!)

in other news, check out my latest script, it is post 46 in the topic called "paradox much?", the subject of the script is "vipers that can fit a railgun, and the fact that the recoil would send it flying backwards very very fast"

@a-squirell, on May 27 2007, 02:59 PM, said in making weapons:

the track called xinon from the album moonlight sympathy

There is no track called Xinon on Moonlight Sympathy, he's the artist (I downloaded that album a good two months ago, I think. Phlogiston is way better than him).

Well it sounds like you're confused about a lot of stuff so I'll explain a few things:

- PICT (resource type): A single image of certain dimensions. Using PICTs for sprites is not recommended (simply because RLEs are better) but when you do use PICT sprites you will need two images - the Sprite and the Mask:
-- Sprite: This is the main image of the sprite which is divided up into multiple 'frames' in order to display it as an animation. Since the sprite is just PICT, the information on how to divide it up is not known. The sprite does not contain transparency data.
-- Mask: The mask defines the transparent areas of a sprite so that it may be rendered on varying backgrounds. This is also used for collision detection. Every sprite requires a mask.

- RLE: Stands for 'Run-Length-Encoding' but that isn't relevant - in the context of Nova RLE just means an rleD or rle8 resource:
-- rleD (resource type): A series of images, each of which have the same dimensions as each other and may include transparency data. rleDs are 16-bit.
-- rle8 (resource type): 8-bit version of rleDs. Let us not mention rle8s again.

- spin (resource type): The sole purpose of a spin is to provide the information on how to divide PICT sprites up into their individual frames and pair them with their masks. This is of course unnecessary for RLEs but Nova still requires you to use a spin to refer to the RLEs. You can't tell the spins whether you're using an RLE or a PICT-based sprite though - the spin will first look for an RLE with the ID given and if it finds one it will use it, else it will look for a PICT. Things in Nova which require sprites (except for ships) all refer to a spin resource. Eg, a weap resource has a field in which you enter the index (index=ID-128) of a spin resource to use as that weapon's sprite.

- shan (resource type): Shans (SHip ANimations) are just like spins for ships. They reference multiple sprite sets to use for the ship and define various animation behaviours.

@a-squirell, on May 27 2007, 03:07 PM, said in making weapons:

(super josh tiger heart saves the day once again! whether it is with plugs, or with simplified answesr to some confusing topics, josh always pulls through! hooray for josh!!!!)\

I'm starting to think I've been playing Nova too long. I seem to know way too much about the game and its workings off the top of my head. But then again, I still don't know everything...hmmmm. Maybe I haven't played enough...

Anyways, no problem. Just helping out.

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