Script Advice/Critique

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Re: Script Advice/Critique

Postby bumbadadabum » July 24th, 2016, 3:53 pm

No matter how much time you spend storyboarding there can always be things you want to change in earlier scenarios. If you download a "Work in Progress" campaign you should be aware this can happen.
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Re: Script Advice/Critique

Postby kantus » July 28th, 2016, 12:44 pm

Hi, sorry for the break. I fell victim to a dangerous drop in motivation thanks to Hearthstone, but I'm gonna try and get back into the swing of things. So, given the worries that have been outlined with the WiP label, what would you guys suggest I do? Would it be possible to send the existing scenarios around to a small group of playtesters, and if so, would it be a good idea?

Thanks again for all your support. I wouldn't have gotten half this far if not for your help!
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Re: Script Advice/Critique

Postby FelixMage » July 29th, 2016, 12:35 am

Dugi wrote:This approach comes very handy when you decide that you need to make some small story changes to the earlier scenarios to make some stuff later in the story fit better. Those who have already played through it will think that the story makes no sense. Other changes may corrupt all older save files and force enthusiastic players to replay the whole thing which is a test of fidelity that everyone will enjoy.

Another great advantage of this approach is that the author will take his time working on the later scenarios, wait for tests of the first ones, keep improving them and lose interest before finishing the campaign. Ice Age Fun, Antar, Son of Rheor or Shadows of Deception bear witness what an awesome development hell comes out of this approach.

Another massive benefit is that the players will remember that your campaign is a work in progress even if you manage to complete it. You cannot rename it to show that it's now complete, few people read the forum to learn of it and few pay attention about the versions. You may even get reviewed it as a work in progress and your complete campaign will be forever marked by the WiP stain.

What approach would you recommend then? Especially if someone is looking to make a longer campaign?
I saw that Legend of the Invincibles was split into like 10 chapters, did you simply upload each chapter whole, then work on the other chapter? This approach might not work for people who want to make a "longer campaign", but not one long enough to be split into multiple chapters.
Reading through my question before posting it, it seems like I am being sarcastic, but that wasn't my intention. I mean it as an honest question, as I also plan on making a campaign of my own and would hate for it to simply die or be stuck in a developement hell.
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Re: Script Advice/Critique

Postby ForestDragon » July 29th, 2016, 5:07 am

FelixMage wrote:What approach would you recommend then? Especially if someone is looking to make a longer campaign?
I saw that Legend of the Invincibles was split into like 10 chapters, did you simply upload each chapter whole, then work on the other chapter? This approach might not work for people who want to make a "longer campaign", but not one long enough to be split into multiple chapters.
Reading through my question before posting it, it seems like I am being sarcastic, but that wasn't my intention. I mean it as an honest question, as I also plan on making a campaign of my own and would hate for it to simply die or be stuck in a developement hell.

well, dugi said about multiple chapters, let me tell you, it doesn't need to uploaded/downloaded seperately just do this (you just need to put multiple [campaign][/campaign] tags in a single _main.cfg file):
Code: Select all
<insert campaign tag with content>
<insert campaign tag with content>
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Re: Script Advice/Critique

Postby FelixMage » July 29th, 2016, 6:45 am

I do know about this, I just wanted to know if Dugi thinks splitting it into chapters does indeed help with the problems he proposed.
Did I just miss him explaining that?
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Re: Script Advice/Critique

Postby ForestDragon » July 29th, 2016, 6:54 am

FelixMage wrote:I do know about this, I just wanted to know if Dugi thinks splitting it into chapters does indeed help with the problems he proposed.
Did I just miss him explaining that?

i don't know
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Re: Script Advice/Critique

Postby Dugi » July 30th, 2016, 9:01 am

FelixMage wrote:What approach would you recommend then? Especially if someone is looking to make a longer campaign?
I saw that Legend of the Invincibles was split into like 10 chapters, did you simply upload each chapter whole, then work on the other chapter?
Kantus wasn't planning a long campaign.

The chapters of Legend of the Invincibles are different than this, they are somewhat independent adventures connected by protagonists and a few story elements. With little exceptions, the story is over at the end of chapter. Big Bad is defeated, Bigger Bad may remain. This is similar to the three episodes of After the Storm.
This is a case when I splitting the campaign and uploading in parts is okay, because the story has a beginning and an end even if the other chapters are not written.

If the campaign would be long, but not splittable, let's say 20 scenarios long (something like Game of Thrones), I admit that not uploading it entirely could make sense.

FelixMage wrote:Reading through my question before posting it, it seems like I am being sarcastic, but that wasn't my intention.
You're quoting a post that is 100% sarcastic, so don't worry about being a little sarcastic.
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Re: Script Advice/Critique

Postby gnombat » July 31st, 2016, 3:59 pm

kantus wrote:Hi, sorry for the break. I fell victim to a dangerous drop in motivation thanks to Hearthstone, but I'm gonna try and get back into the swing of things. So, given the worries that have been outlined with the WiP label, what would you guys suggest I do? Would it be possible to send the existing scenarios around to a small group of playtesters, and if so, would it be a good idea?

Note that it is OK to post it on the add-on server even if it is incomplete - there are many add-ons like that on the server. Generally, add-ons which are a WiP do the following:

  1. Mention in the add-on's description that it is incomplete
  2. Use a version number starting with zero (for example, 0.1)
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Re: Script Advice/Critique

Postby kantus » July 31st, 2016, 11:23 pm

Thanks guys. I'm thinking I may well end up putting it on the server before it's complete (with appropriate notification of course). I'd like to take suggestions for new levels and ideas, and I understand that I may end up artificially extending the length of the campaign by adding in missions that really don't need to be there, so don't be afraid to mention it if you think such-and-such a level is superfluous.

I'll post again when I've actually uploaded the scenarios to the server. Be advised that I don't yet have a proper intro, map, or between-scenario art (though I do at least have between scenario text, if it counts for anything).
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Re: Script Advice/Critique

Postby Dugi » August 1st, 2016, 9:52 pm

Story images and map aren't used very often in user-made campaigns. Most use generic images and or use photos of places passed through various filters, many campaigns don't have you traveling a lot and campaigns taking place outside the main map almost never have a map. If you can't make these, just hope that your story will be amazing enough to motivate someone to volunteer to make one.
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Re: Script Advice/Critique

Postby kantus » August 14th, 2016, 12:28 am

Well, I'm sorry for the nearly fortnight-long hiatus, but I have in fact still been working on the Campaign. As a matter of fact, I've writing this because I've just finished work on Scenario 8 (it's a talkie, the second such, so there's only six "real" scenarios). I've gotten to the point that I think I'd really benefit from some playtesting/criticism. It's one thing to play through it yourself, but as any author knows, it's impossible for an author to see through a consumer's eyes (as regards his own work, anyway). Long story short, I'm going to upload the Campaign as it is to the AddOn Server for people to test.

The trouble is, I'm not really sure how to do this. There's a guide on the main website, but it doesn't contain any worked examples. Can anyone give me a hand with that?

Finally, once it does get up there, I'd like some advice on how to refine it. My writing isn't as good as I think it is, and I've got a strong feeling that I tend towards overwriting and the needless multiplication of plot points. Also, my sense of scenario balance is probably way off (I find village density and placement a particular problem). Nonetheless, these problems aren't going to go away unless we work on them. Thanks for all your help so far, guys - I'd never have come this far if it weren't for this forum!
:D

Thanks
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Re: Script Advice/Critique

Postby Dugi » August 14th, 2016, 9:09 am

You have to create a .pbl file and put it into the add-on's root folder. The add-on list will then contain a new option that allows you to upload your campaign there. Read more at https://wiki.wesnoth.org/PblWML

Congrats on your progress.
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Re: Script Advice/Critique

Postby kantus » August 14th, 2016, 3:47 pm

Thanks again! The parts of the campaign that are complete have now been uploaded under the working title "Lord of the South" (thanks to Dugi for this title). Hope you all enjoy it! Though, knowing my balancing and writing... :P

Anyhow, it'll hopefully work out alright. Looking forward to hearing your feedback!
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Re: Script Advice/Critique

Postby gnombat » August 15th, 2016, 10:34 pm

kantus wrote:The parts of the campaign that are complete have now been uploaded under the working title "Lord of the South"

It appears the title showing up on the add-on server is actually The Desert Scorpion? (not sure if this is intentional or not)
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Re: Script Advice/Critique

Postby kantus » August 16th, 2016, 12:30 pm

Ah yes, I must have failed to retitle it properly, somehow. I'll fix that.

I'd also like to apologise - in my haste, I forgot to fix a minor bug in mission 4 & 5. In the pre-battle banter for these missions, Mu'Staffar is supposed to be talking to his advisor. However, something went wrong with the Advisor-assignment code, and the role doesn't get assigned properly (or it didn't for me, at least, though that may be related to the fact that I lost the initial advisor unit in a previous mission during my playtest run :roll: ). As a result, it may appear during these segments that Mu'Staffar is holding a conversation with himself. This in unintentional, I assure you :lol:

I'll get around to fixing those as soon as I can.

By the way, does anyone have suggestions for easy ways to playtest certain scenarios? For example, if I lose my playthrough saves for Mission 7, I need to play through missions 1-6 first in order to get to it. This is, well, frustrating, even if I cheat by editing the files so that the enemies can't win. Is there an easier way of testing individual scenarios? I'd thought of the possibility of temporarily changing the first mission of the campaign to mission 7, but I'm not sure if that would work and, even if it does, I'm not sure if there's not an easier way.

Thanks,
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