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Kelandon

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Everything posted by Kelandon

  1. Kelandon

    About checking the current tick

    As far as storage, the problem is that variables are sometimes (always?) reset when you reload from a save. So you really would have to store it in an SDF, not a scenario script variable. As far as doing math, yes, the docs say: So you would have to be a bit careful doing math with numbers well over 30,000. You can still do it, but it requires some convolution. But I don't think any of this is relevant to what Thralni is trying to do, really. Nik's script should work well enough.
  2. Kelandon

    Homeland progress report

    Some mixed work on Chapters 1 and 2 over the last couple of weeks. It looks like Chapter 1 will consist of 18 towns, not including a couple that are shared between the Prologue and Chapter 1. Nearly all are near completion; a few have a little dialogue to be added, and one has some combat still to be designed, and one town I haven't created at all (because it's part of a side quest that I won't finish for some time). It's possible there may be one or two more as I add one or two more significant side quests. But Chapter 1 is otherwise done, although still not thoroughly tested. I have 4 towns from Chapter 2 in various stages of completion, but there's still a long way to go. (Probably 10-12 more towns, give or take, which will bring me to a little over 40 by the end of Chapter 2. Aaaaaaauuuggghh.) One thing I'm trying to play with is how much combat (vs. non-combat tasks) there is in any given portion of the scenario. In Chapter 1, the main quests are pretty heavily focused on combat, but the side quests involve almost no combat at all — but this wasn't particularly intentional. It just happened that way. But as I plan out the details of Chapter 2, and even more so as I will get around to planning out the details of Chapter 3, I'll be paying closer attention to this. I worry that I may be Nethergate-ing this scenario a little bit. In Nethergate, the main quest line is spelled out to you pretty immediately, and every step is made clear as soon as you finish a previous step. But there are tons of side quests that you can do, if you go and seek them out — and if you don't, you'll miss most of the color of the game. Homeland is structured in kind of the same way. Still, maybe in BoA, I can count on players to seek out all the little details in the world and find all the side quests, at least more than Jeff could for players of Nethergate.
  3. Kelandon

    About checking the current tick

    Yeah, I'm not sure that anyone who knows will respond, so you should probably just test this yourself. Create a testing scenario (on the surface), put something like print_num(get_current_tick()); into the START_STATE in the scenario script, and walk around for a while to see what happens. I wouldn't be at all surprised if Eph was right and the manual was wrong, but it would be good to check to be sure. Let us know what you find out!
  4. Kelandon

    The Grand Spiderweb Poll, 2017 Edition: Demographics & Favorites

    EDIT: Deleted.
  5. Kelandon

    The Grand Spiderweb Poll, 2017 Edition: Demographics & Favorites

    Under existing law, sure. The concern, apparently, is that the law could change, and it's not clear how the Constitution would apply to this. By way of example, back in the early '80s, Bob Jones University — a private, non-denominational (but conservative) Protestant institution — prohibited interracial dating among its students. The federal government threatened to strip the university's tax-exempt status because the ban on interracial dating was contrary to public policy (eradicating race discrimination). Bob Jones University refused to eliminate the ban; it said that the ban was grounded in its religious principles. In the ensuing lawsuit, the Supreme Court held that the First Amendment didn't prevent the federal government from ending Bob Jones University's tax-exempt status on this basis. At oral argument in the last same-sex marriage case (Obergefell v. Hodges), the lawyer for the federal government (the Solicitor General) conceded that it was an open question whether the same sort of thing would be constitutional if done in the context of gay marriage. That is, it's not entirely clear whether the government could strip the tax-exempt status of religious institutions or religiously affiliated institutions that refuse to perform or recognize same-sex marriages. To be clear, no one has proposed such a step, and it's not clear to me that anyone ever would. As far as I can tell, this is not a thing that anyone actually wants. So I don't think it matters at all. But just quoting the First Amendment isn't quite enough to address this.
  6. Kelandon

    The Grand Spiderweb Poll, 2017 Edition: Demographics & Favorites

    The "than anyone else" part is a bit overbroad; judges and various other officials generally can officiate marriages as well. So there is a parallel, totally secular system.
  7. Kelandon

    The Grand Spiderweb Poll, 2017 Edition: Demographics & Favorites

    Other than adding a modifier to the term "marriage," is there any other separation that you would want? Because I don't really understand what you mean other than that we don't use separate words for the two concepts (except when we do).
  8. Kelandon

    The Grand Spiderweb Poll, 2017 Edition: Demographics & Favorites

    Yeah, not so much. The federal government sometimes prohibits discrimination in its own ranks more broadly than it prohibits in private employment (and occasionally vice-versa as well — it can exempt itself from federal antidiscrimination law). So no, there's never been an explicit general federal ban on employment discrimination based on sexual orientation, or discrimination in public accommodations, or (as far as I know) anything else. People have tried to pass a federal ban on employment discrimination based on sexual orientation, but the last few efforts have failed. Generally, blue states have such a law, so I suspect expect that it will pass at the federal level the next time that Democrats have unified control of the House, the Senate, and the Presidency. Not just possible — this is essentially the system that we already have.
  9. Kelandon

    The Grand Spiderweb Poll, 2017 Edition: Demographics & Favorites

    There's kind of a long way between recognizing same-sex marriages and enacting an antidiscrimination law stripping tax exempt status from nonprofits that discriminate in their services on the basis of sexual orientation. Heck, we don't even have a federal antidiscrimination law that expressly bars employment discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, and that's a lot less of a leap. So the slippery slope argument here, like most slippery slope arguments, seems grossly overwrought.
  10. Kelandon

    The Grand Spiderweb Poll, 2017 Edition: Demographics & Favorites

    I've said this before, but making up definitions of terms is worse than employing standard definitions of standard terms. Even if you just lift definition out of Wikipedia or something, you'll still have something a little more plausible than something that you made up yourself. And it looks like these political definitions were basically just made up, rather than drawn from some outside source. And I get that there is some value in maintaining continuity with past survey questions, but how great is that value when the questions themselves aren't very good? Do you want to keep asking a biased/unclear question over and over again for comparison's sake? If the question is invalid, the comparison is also likely to be invalid. Also, just as a general reminder, italics, bold, and all-caps convey emphasis. If you fill up your post with these kinds of emphatic markers, you seem like you're shouting.
  11. Kelandon

    Resting

    That is presumably holdover text from a previous version in which resting was still a thing. That's been changed; you don't need to rest anymore. Just enter any friendly town.
  12. Kelandon

    Let's Play Blades of Avernum!

    Yes, that is the point that I have been making. Hey, what a great example! It's probably true that these loosely Echoes-linked TM scenarios are about as related as NH is to Bahs/Ex/The Magic. But that Chessrook44 did in fact choose to play Nobody's Heroes in chronological order between Exodus and The Magic. So to the extent that doing that made sense, it also makes sense to do TM scenarios in order, at least the ones with plausible Echoes tie-ins (particularly RoR and maybe Canopy and Settlers). I honestly can't tell if you're joking — I honestly can't tell if the last handful of posts have all been some kind of elaborate and evidently successful attempt to troll me — but if you aren't, look to my previous post, where I did exactly this. If you want more detail, I can dig into the scripts if I have to, but it's there.
  13. Kelandon

    Let's Play Blades of Avernum!

    So, by way of example, Roses of Reckoning takes place in the same world as MA/E:R, a thousand years later (though it was released earlier) and on a different continent. They're both within the extra-canonical historical structure established by TM's BoE scenarios, and they occasionally call back to that structure (a lot more explicitly in RoR). I think the various "tiger" (i.e., rakshasa) references in Canopy place it in the same universe also, but I'm not sure. (I honestly have a lot of trouble following what is going on in Canopy, so there may be more direct connections to the Echoes continuity than that.) I'm pretty sure Settlers is also intended to be within the same universe (you're working for the Empire). I have no idea if Emerald Mountain has anything to do with TM's broader continuity, and it doesn't appear that Bonus Army or Aphobia directly connect. The connections aren't very strong (they don't share characters), and it doesn't really make a big difference if you play them in order, but several of them are related.
  14. Kelandon

    Continuing a SpiderWeb tradition

    Wonder Woman does also have a traditional representation going back decades, so they're not writing on a blank slate. That's not to say that they couldn't change her appearance, just that it would be a bigger lift because of her history. I guess they change characters' appearances/backgrounds somewhat regularly, e.g., the Ancient One in Doctor Strange was changed from Asian to Celtic, but I think that's not a particularly good practice. But one doesn't have to change anything in order to feature characters who look different from the ones who've already been featured. I know less about DC comics, but I do know the X-Men series well (at least through the late '90s), and I would've loved to see, e.g., the Storm/Forge romance from the '80s as the central plot of a movie. It was a great story, better than some others that have been featured, but the lead would have been a black woman, and the main supporting actor would have been a Native American man, so I guess this was not where they were going. I've read that next year's New Mutants movie is going to be an adaption of the Demon Bear story (which is awesome) and, true to the original, it will heavily emphasize Dani Moonstar (who I think is a great character). Dani Moonstar is Native American in the comics, and they actually cast a woman who is part Native American. And we're getting a Black Panther movie next year, too. So the studios are finally starting to move on this, albeit way too slowly.
  15. Kelandon

    Let's Play Blades of Avernum!

    True, and that's more or less what Chessrook44 said at the time: To which Dintiradan responded: Which Chessrook44 definitely saw; he replied: So no, it's not because the information wasn't available or Chessrook44 didn't realize the information was available.
  16. Kelandon

    Another GUI enlargement attempt

    My recommendation would be the layout of the most recent picture, but change the main view to 1.5x, increase item fonts 1.5x, and shrink the action icons to one row (like in the third iteration) and move them under the item list.
  17. Kelandon

    Let's Play Blades of Avernum!

    Nobody other than me two months ago in this thread, you mean. To be clear, I don't really care what order you play scenarios in (even if I think it's weird). I'm just still in the "pointing out when you say things that are wrong" mode.
  18. Kelandon

    Let's Play Blades of Avernum!

    Tarsus, you're still misunderstanding me, but I don't know how to say it more clearly. I'm not saying that playing MA before E:R is pointless. Obviously it's not. I'm saying that starting TM's BoA scenarios at MA, rather than RoR, is weird if you intend to play everything in order. I don't remember the specific connections, but I don't think it's entirely true that TM's other BoA scenarios have no connection to each other whatsoever; at a minimum, they're basically all set in the Echoes universe.
  19. Kelandon

    Let's Play Blades of Avernum!

    Okay, but that's sort of the wrong way around. I'm not saying that E:R and MA aren't related; I'm saying that almost all the other ones are related also. EDIT: At a minimum, starting at MA is sort of like deliberately playing Icewind Dale before playing Baldur's Gate. It's not wrong, exactly—they're not sequels, although they are in the same setting and the later makes a little reference to the earlier—but it's odd, at least when you're otherwise fairly insistent about doing things in order.
  20. Kelandon

    Let's Play Blades of Avernum!

    I've basically said this before, but I don't know where you got your "play in order" lists from, and your source doesn't seem very reliable. I don't remember Echoes: Renegade well enough to remember whether it is a direct sequel to Mad Ambition, but it is part of the Echoes series, and just about every other TM BoA scenario is also part of the Echoes series. So I don't know in what way it makes sense to think of Mad Ambition and Echoes: Renegade as parts of a series but not, say, Canopy or Roses of Reckoning as parts of the same series (and as earlier installments in that series). As I said before, TM's plots are such that I'm not sure it really matters, but this approach to scenarios is weird.
  21. Kelandon

    Another GUI enlargement attempt

    I have no problem with the pixellated graphics, but the smallness of the text is not great.
  22. Kelandon

    Grand Poll -- category suggestions

    The quoted text.
  23. Kelandon

    Grand Poll -- category suggestions

    I'm not sure, but this may be the first time I've gotten one of your references.
  24. Kelandon

    Continuing a SpiderWeb tradition

    I mean, sexualization and violence in video games are trends that go back to at least the '80s. They've gotten more extreme as games have gotten more elaborate, but they were there a long time ago. (Was that what the scare quotes were intended to indicate? It seemed unclear.) It's hard not to notice when two-fisted fury is directed at you.
  25. Kelandon

    Let's Play Blades of Avernum!

    This is a good idea, at least when it's something that's preventing you from making progress. Many game-killing bugs in BoA are actually fairly trivial for designers to fix if we know about them — it's just that we often don't. This is especially so when we designed on Mac and you're playing on Windows. In response to certain situations with certain scripts, Mac BoA will function perfectly fine and Windows BoA will crash, which means that there are all kinds of crashes that Windows players experience that Mac designers have no idea about unless they're reported to us. For example, telling Mac BoA to erase a character that doesn't exist does nothing. In Windows BoA, it causes a game-killing crash (at least some of the time, possibly all of the time). It takes literally one very simple line of code to fix this; just check if the character exists before erasing it. But if you're a Mac designer, you might have no idea you have to do this unless Windows players report their crashes (and report them fairly precisely) to you. There are a lot of situations like this. Also, Thralni, if you need any sort of advisory assistance with a scenario, I'd be happy to help. I haven't actually played WtRM, but I could.
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