RSS

Category Archives: off topic

The test map: Hextown, Nostagia 2009 Edition

Hextown is a interesting re-texture of the classic map skytown.

I had the idea many years ago when i was playing  Hexen ,  a doom2 engine game on the doomsday engine in coop . I liked the look of the 8 bit textures and figured they were worth  making a unreal map with. But i didn’t really want to make a new map just to test to  see how it looks.`

I ripped the textures from hexan using some ancient map editing tools written for doom and put the textures into a new unreal texture file. now what the hell am i gonna do with this?

At the time one of my favorite  town like maps was skytown. so it made a good candidate to test the textures.So thats what i did i retextured  skytown. Back then I barely know what i was doing and half the textures came out screwed since i didnt  understand texture standards and pallates

Im not gonna make this more then it is , its just a crappy retextured version of skytown.

 

it includes 2  reskinned pawns that  where new at the time , or my own ideas.First is the zombie skarja from masterunreal , with blood sounds.
The second is my attempt to make a warlord into a harpy. it sort or resembled harpy  barly, but  the colors are wrong. its different never the less.

While its really just a boring test map, I enjoy playing it from time to time just because it looks like a skytown in hexen  might look . and it sort of 8 bit ish , every texture was changed, the pawns  decorations glass , water , etc it is really very strange looking.

Like others in my footsteps i also considered porting the sprites , but never bothered to try.I also had tracked down some oldskool crossbow and staff that  i planned on using from killernali.u but i never bothered to add them. I have no idea where they are now  anyway.

Will I ever work on the map again , Probably not,It’s not worth anything. Except mabye to re import the texture package now that i know what im doing. I still have the original texture source files i exported , but  unless i have some crazy retro urge again , I think ill pass on using 64×64 8 bit textures on many  future projects. they do have a great oldskool  look tho.

The utx file heretictex.utx  is include and  your welcome to use them  or re import them into another package.  But the textures are likely from hexen not hertic,I think i used  that name since I already had a hexentex.utx file  already.I bet if i hunt online i could find hd versions of these texture packages to use instead ( something to look into), But  that wasnt the effect i was going for with this map.

This map was sort or all but forgotten ,Intill I started digging tho my files to find a few  of my lost maps.I am gonna upload this one  and some others not so much for anybody else , But just to keep a copy online so i dont lose it again. Your welcome to play it but its kinda silly.  Download link

Advertisements
 
 

Xcoop Gametype: Info / Overview / Review

This is likely the longest post I have every made here so far. Its a overview of a deprecated  coop game type. It not made to suggest you go out an change the way you already do things , It just to share  my view on a platform thats  some what ill considered. It took me about 7 hours to write this out in this most coherent detail. If your just a player this doesn’t interest you too much.

I am ok if you  just TL;DR .

Xcoop

You hear me talk about it alot ,
and you see many of the mods I sometimes make require it ,
but what is xcoop?

Xcoop is Pcube ‘s older original  Opensource coop gametype,
Its similar to say – Jcoopz1 , or Jcoop4 , or  Mcoop , or even akcoop That you may have seen online, Its a enhanced subclass of coopgame just like tho others.

Very few servers run xcoop , Such as  the uas clan  , kirby’s tarvern , long journey ,jgj xcoop and  my crazy server,The only 4 I know of , But that dosnt mean its not a good choice. The question  on your mind is why do i want this.

To answer that question I will  start with this, Currently thers isn’t many good open source gametypes avalible, the only current  ones are jgrass gxcoop or xcoop, and by open source I mean that you can edit the code of the gametype to extend its usability.

Maybe this dosnt matter to you and you just wanna play the game and never mess with anything or use advanced mods.if so  this likely isn’t for you. in that case I would then recomend jcoopz1, It easy and proven.

Many of us use closed source  software and mods all the time whether we know it or not, The whole open source gimmick  only showed up a few  years of so ago. But in unreal open source is the norm, To close source your mods requires additional tools and effort, and generaly it not what normal people do, what makes close source  odd  in unreal  is that the unreal editor stores the code  in the original files as text buffers, by default.

Unfortinitly many developers seem to think it is necessary to strip out or obfusate there script for security reasons ( like zombie), Mabye there is some merit in that , but it hard to prove.

Jcoopz1 ( every bodies favorite gamtype) For example is mid-closed source , It has a limited api for allowing some parts of it to extended with strict limits.

You can use custom playerpawns in jcoopz , But they need to subclass jzplayer( which they should to follow the flow)  but it requires  duplicating somones work which may not be possible if .. the playerpawn itself is closed source.it also requires  writing a bit of script in the playerlogin class replacemnt scripts as well.

if you want to add advanced mutators that interact with the playerpawn in ways like mutatescorekill  or  draw to the hud  , add mutatecommands  , or modfy admin commands or have mutiple tiers of admins. its simply not possible.

You can use a custom hud in jcoopz , but the original hud code is striped out so you cant properly subclass your own.

Jcoopz also has strange built in security bullshit that  you cant disable as a server owner.( client anomaly comes to mind)  I have contacted zombie a few times about this and his response usually involves him  making a slight change that makes no difference as opposed to removing or added a option to disable it.

While jcoop may be popular and fairly feature packed. Some things just dont cut it , Those little features  and behaviors bother people like me, Yeah i run jcoopz on some of my servers, mainly since that what players asked for and i have no plans to add anything more then jcoopz can support , but when my players ask me to add sothing like  custom playerpawns or hud addons or want mutators that can track monsterkills, I have to tell then it not posssible or too difficult to make happen easily.

Que xcoop:

Xcoop isnt limited be anything , If you can think of somthing and you know how to make it you can add it.

Xcoop lacks some features ,  But some things balance out or can be changed easily

Security:

Attack protection:

Xcoop isn’t terrible secure against certain attacks like RJA attacks by itself   there no join deley limiter, But if you run it in 225 or 226 it is assumed you are running nythes already or you are a  idiot.  In 227 the game isnt vulnerable to there attacks.

Players summoning items are logged along with the items summon , so that admin can easily spot the asshats that summon blobs and bots to lag the servers.

Player rejection / banning:

xcoop has no temporary or pban capibility built in. there is a xcoop addon called xbansecurity that was developed  to allow you to ban ranges , or ip address and also provides the banned player with a custom rejection message. xban security wont work from the server console or webadmin , and dosnt always respond to command due to mutate failing to register sometimes.

Yet again , the nytesis mod  on 225/226, and or 227 offers BETTER banning in most cases be itself. 227 can ban by the players mac address , and nysis provide a rudimentary guid to ban with  aswell as the ability to ban stealth. , A firewall also never hurt to block troublesoome lamers.

Administration:

xcoop allows for 3 seperate user passwords , one for each adminlevel. and employs a 3 tiered admin system ,  where any arbitrary command like fly , summon or say , can be limited to a tier or above , so you could give normal player the ability to fly/walk , but not summon if you so wished.

You can make the lvl 3 admin a moderator or   with permisions to cheat , and fly , but not switch levels.

This 2 tiered admin system also provides another level of security that other gametypes dont offer.If say some user exploits the sefver , and gains admin access ( badmin flag) then they still cant do anything since they dont have a authoriy level set , they cant set the authority level as they cant use  admin set without  level1 access flag the admin login is protected against bruteforce attacks with a kill/ kick system you can specify the maximum attemps before a kick or kill.

It also allows for the addition of a custom authority handler witch allows you to add whatever verification or authentication system you like , uid , ip , mac , name , whatever you can think of , its semi trivial to add more passwords and individual accounts with basic scriting knowledge. These custom handlers can be server-side to increase the security  even more against exploits such as decompiling the defaults. or attempeting to read values of passwords.

Playerpawns

custom playerpawns are supported as a optional setting  , but it is highly recommended that you rewrite the playerpawn branching from xplayer , as standard playerpawns  Wont follow the security changes of the xplayers.

very important  to note is the fact that non xplayer pawns that login via password as any adminlevel , are givin full admin server  control ( equvelent to level 1 privlidges with full admin flags) since they dont have a adminlevel flag attached to them. so choose carfully and think first.

xcoop have the ability to replace custom playerpawn request at login.

Extendability:

xcoop come with alot of replacable and additional addon entrypoints.

mutator plus:

mutaterender:

probably the best one of these , it allows modders to draw/render to the the hud with a mutator, witch is especially important to mods that need to display onto the hud such as radar , osd etc.

mutate scorekill:

one of the most usfull this will rely the kill in the game and the onwers and damage types for scorekeeping of leveling mods to use.

mutate respawnplayer:

this is another handy one , it called when the player respawn , similer to modifyplayer in ut , it lets mods modfy the playerpawn in ways such as adding weapons or inventory , or initalizing theplayer.

mutate :

mutate is a easy way to add commands to you mutators for conrtoling them via mutate strings.

Basic funtionality

xcoop comes out of the box with many options

freindly fire scaling , options toggle momentum/hit blocking, support 128 map path redirects, instant respawn, saved scores to server,customizable entry/exit messages ,  level end sounds, sprees and spree messages and sounds, full custom text colors. optimal  monster deathmessages

Hud/Scoreboard:

xcoop provides a standard custom scoreboard , that shows the standard score kills as well as player name and console and there current playing song. xcoop allows for the player to select there own colors for there  scoreboard  information , as well as a face texture , to show when the player chats a message.

the score board can also display a server logo  or banner to advertise your server. it also allows for custom scoreboards  to by used easily as well. and scoreboard class can be plugged in to entirly change the look and fell.

Installation

xcoop is easy to install , but not as easy as jcoop prehaps.

it  uses xcoop.ini as base as oppose to using the games specified default config  (unreal.ini) so if you have multiple presets or server setups , you can only have 1 configuration per game.

The installation involves copying a few files into your unreal folder , It requires no native  mods  of dependences on dlls, so thers no issues between versions.

setup  after installation is simple

set admin passwords , edit autority handler, and set the defualt inventory , your good to go. but it  doesn’t support adding charges or ammo in the gvieitems  list so you wil need a extra mutator for that. you could use infinite ammo , or create a custom mutatorplus mutator using mutate respawnplayer,too add that functionality.

if you wish to uses the spree sounds, you need to add the xcoop sounds to the serverpackages.

Extending the standard game with mutators:
the thing about xcoop is that its not terribly popular so there is only like 2 developers that evven bother making mods for it publicly.
xcoop support all standard mutators EXCEPT dzmapmut, and CMAPfix cant initialize fast enough in xcoop to fix certain map issues. uh oh!
known mutatorplus addons:
  • Toasty                 – a text phrase sound clip playing mod for
  • xbansecurity    -security / banning extention
  • chatlink       – a addon that links  chat on one server to another
  • dlreporter   – a great 227 hud mutator that adds download status
  • a invasion radar hud
  • dropmut
  • bloodmutator
  • quiz
      non public mods ( mod that were not officaly released)
  • playerpowers  – adds  powers like fireball to player that login with a certain password
  • entry and exit sounds –  add sound when players enter or exit
  • and more…
Popularity:
its not terrible popular for a few reasons , one is that its not on any of the main unreal mod sites , it almost like they dont want players to use or find it. that bothers me and is part of the reason why i try to point it out to others.
Another reson in the dark history , in the early days of xcoop there was alot of hackers , and since xcoop was a unknown , many users complaned of being hacked by xcoop servers , But that  never proven , and unlike tho other gametype i can open the source code for xcoop and prove that there’s no malicious activie going on behind my back.
Many of the developers proved there skills and made there own gametypes , some that you never heard of , like  pgcoop , cooopgame , koopgame , joop4 , abcoop, etc and dont use xcoop.
Then theres the EVERYONE LOVES ZOMBIE problem, where everyone like zombie ands his deadzone server and every single person wants to have the same thing with little variation .
Heres another great example :
Jcoopz1 is like the iphone of coopgames , it works and people know it,
Where as xcoop is like android –Everyone wants iphone , even if they dont know that theres better options avalible.
( wow yay another great blog topic there)
many server admins use xcoop as a base and  build on the sourcecode, as oppose to using the stock source code. uas server’s mx coop is a subclass of xcoop , long journy is a modified xcoop, as is kirbys tavern , that the beauty of open source software , you can make it you own.
in conclusion:
xcoop is a decent to awsome gametype depending on how you look at the feature set and what your  plans for expansion are , I cant really recomend this to newbies or begining server owners , And if you already have experence with jcoop , you will quickly find were the weak points of this gametype is and where it needs impovments.
Eol / sustanability:
Xcoop development has ceased as the new jgrass platform has been released witch includes generic low level access  to pretty much every thing serverside, but xccop is still  more popular and wayyy easyer to setup and get running then jgrass/or gxcoop.
disclaimer:
this post was  in no way endorsed  or requested by udhq.org , im just a big fan , and  i feel xcoop isnt widespread enough.everyone to there own.since I am not directly trying to sell this gametype to anybody , I am not going to supply a link to download.also There is enough original information in this post to start a freaking xcoop wiki, This is what the description of xcoop should look like , not a single paragragh summary that on the author’s site.

 
1 Comment

Posted by on March 20, 2012 in off topic, Uncategorized

 

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Recognizing Various Code Obfuscation Techniqes

This is dedicated to anybody else that finds  ‘protected’  mods  annoying  could also concern people thate port mods or content to differnt version of the game.

This is a sketchy and foggy avenue to go down,  Since it could lead to stealing others works , But that not what this article concerns. This atricle is just for  average users to understand what there looking at  and advanced users to let them uderstand  what doing on in these mods if that what they wish to do.

All the tools in this post are already public knowledge and freely avalible in many ut sites.

Read the rest of this entry »

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on December 28, 2011 in off topic

 

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Client Versions Profile + PieChart

I have always wondered just how many people use certain versions of the game , It interests me as a server owner to try and make my server the most compatible , and watch out for crashes between  certin version of the game ,

A few montnsts ago , A addon was created for jgrass that was called versionprofiler , and it allowed users that joined that server to have there client version info logged , Which i thought was a great idea for statistics.
but further examination  made me realize alot of issues with that system,

Problem 1:
That server ran 227h , So that fact by itself will stop many people from joining , It like a stigma or somthing , they visit one server , it says you need to update , so they think they cant join any 227 server.

Problem 2:

The method he used required the user to get into the server before it can replicate the information from the clientside, and this particular server requires about 50 or 60 mb to join.

These problems make this situation biased IMO and the result will lean toward 227 users only.

Lets fix that!

What i did:
I created a 225 server , In 225 , Downloads  arnt a issue anyway , Since nephthys shows all the client version information  as soon as the client attempts to connect so no need to make any mod to collect the info , or even wory about them downloading.

Example :

Nephthys: 2011/12/25 01:42:45: New 76.xxx.xx.225:2877: Bob Player

DevNet: Level server received: HELLO REVISION=0 MINVER=224 VER=227 SUBVER=8 Computer:1xxx5294382 Identity:-xxx596030

The only downside to  this is that you cant identify subversions of 226 , But we dont care -I want 227 counts vs 226 counts. we want to know how many players can use 227 features etc.

So I crawled the log files for connections , The server I created wasnt very established  ( I used the data fom my  tva server , Since the data was fresh  and there were no files to download ) , Only 77 players connected so far in a week.Thats about avrage 10 new players a day lol.

As a quick comparison , I sarted a 227h server  a mothth ago with a lot a hyp and stuff , and i got 7 total connects in 2 weeks. huh wtf ???

Neptis can log aliases , but it not 100% acurate , especially  if you not entering the server to save unqiqe id’s first , etc , and dynamic ip’s could mees up the results  , So I manualy checked  for duplicate ips and multiple name or uids

Plus , If results become worrysome, I can always trace the ip to a area , or simply check the dynamic status of the address  and use that as a secondary check for duplicates.

But lets get to the results. !!!!!

This may come at a bit or a shocker ,

227 came close with 32 users between all version( many using outdated releases, Witch would be non compatible with h) , But 226  wins with over 40 users. How sad why is everyone not using 227 yet it been out for 3 years.. mabye cause they don’t care or don’t know it exists who knows , but this basally means you cant use a 227 server with 227 only features if you want to have any players join it.

 

edit : please dont misunderstand this graph , this doesn’t mean it a good idea to  have a 226 server , as there are 3 net incompatible version of 226 in use.

I will do this again once i has 100 user to recaculate the pie again.

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on December 28, 2011 in off topic

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

Happy Holidays , Hellweapons , Whatever

http://sstatic1.histats.com/0.gif?1766114&101

document.write(unescape(“%3Cscript src=%27http://s10.histats.com/js15.js%27 type=%27text/javascript%27%3E%3C/script%3E”));

try {Histats.start(1,1766114,4,234,112,50,”00011000″);
Histats.track_hits();} catch(err){};

free web page hit counter

It christmas eve  , Only about 8 hours Intill christmas!, oh Joy!

I am not expecting too much this year   , Its  always better when  you are  younger and people shower you with lots of gifts , once you get older, You end up buying you own gifts  and christmas loses most of it appeal. and becomes more of a chore then a holiday.

Last year I was hoping for some new computer hardware  that would upgrade this aging machine , But that ending up not working out. This year  I have my eye on a new  mp3 player mabye.??

In the end it not about the gifts so to speak anyway.I hope everyone gets what they  were looking forward to and that they get to be with family and freinds in whatever way you celebrate.  For me that Christmas

I personaly wish that things around here (people’s lives, situations etc) Would change for the better including my own. Its kinda  depressing.

Thank you unreal friends .

I leave you with this , A litle project I built in my bedroom a few years ago when I was into electronic projects before unreal sucked by life up forever.

——————————————————–

Hellweapons

Mentalhunter has sent along a new 225 weapons pack , Called hellweapons , it nothing special but it under testing on the 225 dev server

Summon HellWeapons.HellCannon
Summon HellWeapons.HellStinger
Summon HellWeapons.HellStinger2
Summon HellWeapons.HellMag
Summon HellWeapons.LaserGun
Summon HellWeapons.HellWeapon

download link for testing (Not a official release!!!)

———————————————————————-

Also there is a small chance I will probably be playing games on here into the night  tonight , I have nothing  much beter to do and no plans i dont think…

°★。˛ °.★** *★* *˛.
˛ °_██_*。*./ \ .˛* .˛.*.
˛. (´• ̮•)*˛°*/.♫.♫\*˛.* ˛_Π_____. * ˛*
.°( . • . ) ˛°./• ‘♫ ‘ •\.˛*./______/~\*. ˛*.。˛* ˛. *。
*(…’•’.. ) *˛╬╬╬╬╬˛°.|田田 |門|╬╬╬╬ .
¯˜”*°••°*”˜¯`´¯˜”*°••°*”˜¯`¬´¯˜”*°´¯˜”*°••°*”˜¯`´¯˜”*°•~

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on December 24, 2011 in off topic, site news

 

Tags: , , , ,

Thoughts about running coopgames in unreal tournament pt 1

I used to like unreal tournament ,I still think its one of the best  games ever made , its got  the right mix between system resource usage ( it will run on almost any mid modern machine very well) and its options like mutatot plus are very good.

I have been playing ut for many   years   used to have all the mods files and maps. lost alot of stuff over the years and made so many good freinds.  i get interested in things in phases so to speak , and used to play ut and ut2004 in my free time alot.was mainly interested in deathmatch onslaught and the ‘team’ based games.

but i digress….

I found unreal one day on the shelf and gave it a go and it fun in a whole differt way , you can have  or join a coop game with no mods or patches required. I loaded up unreal and saw that coop tab and gave it a go and fell in love at first sight.

at this point i would consider myself a ‘hardcore’ unreal fan , I know and have ran everything that avalible that i can get me hands on, I have collected a astounding 30+gb of maps and unreal retated content in under 2 years.I know the limitations of the game and how to makes things happen.

but unreal is a great platform –

File sizes and redirect support

in unreal most file and map sizes are small, In the range of  1- 10mb  , Unlike unrealtourament where coop maps are 9 – 40mb!!.

Downloads in ut are also unbarably slow without costly redirect servers.In unreal227 you can download over 40mb in under 3 minutes with no redirects .You can cut that time in half or 1/4  if you set up a free apache webserver on your server machine.

where asa similar download  in UT that would take 39 minutes..

The coop gametypes

unreal supports  the defualt coop game-its basic enought for casual users , but you can get  small footprint gameypes like XCOOP or jcoop . which will add massive functionality- xcoop can add mutator hooks like ut does easily

ut dosnt supoport a working coop game out of the box , theres no coop tabs to find games in. It requires a a user made mod called oldskool whick many unreal modders consider a hackjob and full of bugs by itself.  this coop game is only a base so to speak fior other gametypes and has no features  to write home about honestly . the configuration options are all over the place, and starting a coop server is less then idea since to set up mutators you need to dig places whee you shouldnt need to

almost every coop mission pack or mod made for unrealtournament requires a custom  coop subclass to function properly(usally based on oldskool). you cant simple open a map with oldskool or any cutom gametype and expect it to function like you can with unreal. This  significatly limits how other mods  like infiltration can interact and re use the maps.

also many coop packs use custom paths to avoid the constant mismatches that ut has. and therfore many coop packs wont run together

————-

To be continued in Part 2 someday ..

————

also :

I find the limits of  unreal to be a pushing point – I Find out a way to  do what I want to accomplish with the limited feature set , that makes it all that more impressive. when somthing amazing happens and they say wow i didnt even know this was possible in unreal..,

 

 

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 27, 2011 in off topic

 

Tags: ,

When is enough too much and more

well the new pawns were cool ,So i took the time to import more of them!- um almost all of them to be exact heh

Heres is a few screenshots of them in unreal.

Theres about a half dozen more I dont have shots of yet aswell.

————————————————-

I also went ahead and imported maps x24 – x33 just becuase i can!
Of course this is where the problems starts ,
I only planned on importing the decorations and a few pawns ,
yet ended up importing 3/4 of the game.!!!
Now the amount of downloads to play those maps is closer to 50mb.
The pawns package is like 14mb now and dont forget the urbantex.utx thast like 19mb by itself…
so now there is tooo much to even  be usefull.nobody gonna download 50 mb foe 10 crappy maps….
So I spent better part of today breaking up thos pawns into separate packages, That i was gonna post here and then it occured to me it not such a good idea.
so that will need to wait.
I am considering starting another unreal sever just for these pawns and maps  i think it enought to start a new setup with…mabye a x planet server or somthing.
i have a habit of over doing things sometimes most of the time , and this is no exception…
————————————
on a unrelated note ,
The halloween map got some hay and a tractor.
Its  a bit early to think about it now , But I want to start work on a christmas/holiday related map , Possibly  rework skytown , or spirevillage again  Last year I tried at last minute to make one from spirevillage and it turned into a crashy mess(mapname  s24).
Prehaps I can break down and attempt to make a christmas  map from scratch. I was reminded by this video  that the holidays are comming fast.
I cant do terrain so i have no idea where thats going , Plus one of my good supporting unreal friends  Doesnt really do christmas(just dosnt care for it)  , So theres noone to encourage me on a map of that theme really except myself.
———————————————————
Also while im thinking about importing stuff,
Im considering  making a tool that will fix the imports in decompiled .uc files automatically. What I mean by that is to fix paths and match the import names to the assets. Currently im doing this manually , but it predicable , and having  something do it automatically , Would shave off 45 seconds per scriptfile.  when you have dozens of files that can be the difference between doing it and saying screw it.(like the xdecorations package).
 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 10, 2011 in Cool Stuff, off topic