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Savage Land FAQ And Red Nemesis Queries

For public discussion of "Savage Land" and other Red Nemesis projects.

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Subject: Savage Land FAQ And Red Nemesis Queries

Post Posted: 13 Mar 2017, 16:30

Savage Land Announcement, Questions and Answers

Ask Additional Questions! Good ones will be added to the first post!

Q: Is this Residual Decay?

A: Yes. And no. Savage Land was to be part one of a planned episodic release of RD (along with Dead Cells and Xidia Black) but at this time only Savage Land will likely see a release. I realized once I set out to do this that it was better to focus on one episode and fit as much of the good stuff in as I could. Savage Land is not merely RD rebranded or downgraded, but rather a new project that appropriates and absorbs much of RD's unrealized content.

Q: So, then what is Savage Land?

A: Savage Land is a classic styled Unreal campaign. It is being designed for simultaneous release on Unreal and UT. It will feature the classic bestiary and inventory. In terms of setting, the stories and themes that shaped Battle For Na Pali are directly influential. This might surprise people, but this is where my head was about ten years ago when I was actively converging Residual Decay and the remnants of BFNP into one project. Savage Land is the best culmination of that effort. As was BFNP's original plan this campaign takes place on a Na Pali set many years after the events of Unreal. To those of you who are familiar with what would have been Team UnrealSP's ill-fated magnum opus, think of Savage Land as a spiritual prequel to BFNP.

Q: Is Savage Land a standalone campaign or is it a sequel/followup to the Jones saga?

A: The resulting plot lines of Unreal, RTNP, and Deja Vu will factor heavily on the Na Pali you will see. Furthermore, the events of Seven Bullets are also acknowledged canon though in no way is playing it directly integral. It follows the Jones saga's timeline but is not a sequel. Otherwise, I went out of my way to avoid retconning as many major community campaigns as possible. More importantly, what I would like to do with this project is preserve many of the intentions BFNP set out to achieve, albeit in a much more Unreal flavored approach with less focus on features. In short, this is an Unreal story. No bells or whistles.

Q: How many maps?

A: The demo is two. Couldn't get the third map done yet (too big). The final project? Hard to say. 15-20 seems like a safe guess for what I have currently, but it could be less or more depending on what I ultimately need or don't need. The final count is unknown.

Q: Yeah but how many of those final levels are redux levels?

A: Exactly zero.

Q: Out of the 15-20 planned maps, how many of them have been started and how many of them are close to be finished?

A: There are about 14 levels currently, most in states closer to be being done than otherwise. A couple of those are still pretty early, one in particular is pretty new. There are about 8 that are straight ready to be processed with Savage Package assets (including an excellent level made by Jet) but they are later in the campaign and I'm trying to focus more in chronological order hehe.

In terms of what hasn't been started, there are about four levels ideas I haven't gotten passed the planning phase that may be cut or combined. My approach to Savage Land is more about what works than maps existing for the sake of existing. If something doesn't quite work on its own or provide a meaningful sense of progress for the player I'll probably remove it from the list.


Q: What happened to Jones?

A: Story answer? He's retired. Project answer? I think part of my problem going back some years was that I was stuck with this guy as the main focus. It presented all these roadblocks as my interests for the project began to change. Finally one day I just sort of looked at the content, the levels, ect, and not the character. When I removed Jones from the board I also simultaneously removed a bunch of other things that were holding back any meaningful progress. It was the first step.

Q: Is there a target release time or launch plan?

A: I am open to episodic releasing. Depending on how people feel about it or if I have additional mapping help I could envision the first five or six levels encompassing a "Part One" sort of situation. I suppose it depends on how long things take.

Q: Who is Patient 3?

A: A nameless protagonist. In the demo this player character will use your default selection, although a unique character appearance may be made later.

Q: Is there going to be voice acting? Does Patient 3 speak?

A: Patient 3 does not speak or have any voice lines, nor do I have plans to give him/her them in the full campaign. However, slight musings and suggestive thoughts will occur in white text on the top left of the screen from time to time to indicate a change in the environment. These are meant to be hints. As for other voice acting, some new sound files will be used in the demo in ambient noises onboard the Vortex Hibernia.

Q: Will there be cutscenes?

A: No. The final release may have an intro and extro, but that's really all I'd be willing to do. Savage Land will maintain the player's POV from beginning to end.


Q: How many surviving levels will we see from BFNP?

A: Currently I have made the hard decision to not use any. This...might sadden many people, but please hear me out. The best level was Fashahhh's The Vale, which is the one I would have loved to have used if I could have picked any of them. However, due to the huge delay getting this project prepared I thought it would have been unfair to approach Fashahhh's about this until I was ready and clearly the recent release of the Vale as a standalone speaks to my inability to make this happen in a timely fashion. It's a good level. I would have been honored to have been able to find a home for it in Savage Land. Just a little too late I guess.

I remember telling Hellscrag years ago that I was definitely going to incorporate as many maps as I could. I all but promised the man! But that was quite a while ago and all my other issues aside I found the biggest map problem was that much of the content was a challenge to finish. Excluding the Vale, the maps that were complete (or most developed, that is, since it's quite hard for me to look at any of the BFNP levels this way) were difficult for me to use. Hellscrag's town map, for instance was quite a beautiful piece of mappage, but try as I might I just could not find a way to do it justice. Funnily enough the most useable map assets were the more incomplete map fragments I have littered about that were more or less sections of levels that might have been. Those, or terrain experiments. Stuff from Neutron, Kaka, and others. I had set pieces and striking locales, not playable levels.

To compromise on this, I've made attempts to actually recreate some of the levels from scratch, or to say it better reimagine them from a new perspective. There was a certain tone to the core of the levels that Team UnrealSP did actually make that had a magic worth preserving.

Q: Do you feel as if you owe the community an explanation on what happened to RD and BFNP?

A: Full disclosure. This is an actual question and one that was added to the FAQ for no better reason than because I've been asked it more than once over the years. Perhaps a forum format is probably not the best place, though I will answer any specific questions if asked (if more is required of me after what I will say now, that is). I touched on some of this in recent years on a Jones Saga thread in the MOTW section of the forum, so go there to get up to date on details I've said publicly already. Otherwise, may as well get it out of the way...


It's hard enough when you let a project get away from you. It's quite something else when you take on the burden of another failing project in the hopes of preserving it, only to be the last guy holding the bag when the bottom falls out. Looking back, I do feel as if BFNP and RD and the other unfinished "big" projects all had the similar problems. It should be said that I do not feel responsible for what ultimately happened to BFNP, just that I am disappointed that I could not do more at the time.

I will say this though. I made Xidia with a Belgian dude I met on a DM server when I was a teenager. Seven Bullets...there was like a handful of us. Deja Vu was made in a real short time also. My point? There were plenty of able bodies about on these projects. I don't believe in this "talent spread thin" theory anymore. Look at Jazzy B and what he accomplished on his own for more evidence. Perhaps it should have been about making maps at the time above planning big ideas. It's always about maps in the end. Keeping things simple and focused. The fact that there's precious few completed levels in BFNP speaks a lot more to the point of what I was saddling myself with at the time. I do not know if anyone could have done more with what was left of BFNP than I, and all I can say is that I did my best under the circumstances.

The heart of BFNP will be restored in Savage Land and maybe if this Demo gets decent feedback some of the old crew will get in touch with me. Recently, two of BFNP's most fleshed out levels have been released. This is great news and you should give Fashahhh and Hellscrag your attention.

Q: What's new? What will we see that you could keep from BFNP and RD?

A: I'm trying real hard to keep it as close to vanilla as possible. To accomplish this I have made many sacrifices. Having said that, the announcement pix do not lie. We have two new additions to the weapon loadout. The brand new one specially made for Savage Land is the Driftwood Crossbow; a weapon modeled and animated by Jet, scripted by Raven and perfected by Alcapowned, with sounds provided by Kaka. It will occupy the slot 8 weapon in Savage Land (the GES Bio Rifle is not present this early in the campaign). In many ways this is the fulfillment of what would have been The Hunter's signature weapon in Battle For Na Pali. While very functional, the weapon's true usefulness relies on the skill of the user.

The other new weapon is the fabled energy gun from BFNP, the EAR. Though, this thing was in rough shape for such a long time. The original intent was for it to replace the minigun as devised in BFNP, but to be very honest I've had some trouble liking this gun in its original form. At some point it became more obligation to preserve it than for the sake of function, and that's no reason to mess up a good loadout. It just...was missing something for me. I am happy to report that, whatever that was, I have found it. With Alcapowned on the case the weapon has gotten a lot of love. I would go as far as to say that Al wrested the weapon from a kind of mod purgatory. One thing we had to do was remove Botpack dependency for it (somewhat of an odd obstacle) and then fix some model and projectile issues. Once that was done, each new update was even more fantastic than the last. People will want to shoot this thing, a lot.

With much testing and modification the weapon is actually...well, it's very fun to use now. This was pivotal, since the state it was left in when I acquired the BFNP files ten years ago was far from being the better replacement for the minigun it was purported to be. For my part I have provided Al with some sound files and graphics from RD that were intended for unrealized guns (original sounds mixed by Zynthetic, some borrowed, and many vibrant particle effects made by UArchitect for RD weapons that we were never able to be completed) as well as some unused models from Diamond to help us along. All and all the final weapon will be quite flexible, boasting a total of four firing modes (a keybind will be necessary for this, though oldskool users will have this set to the reload key by default) and featuring amplifier compatibility.

Both weapons are meant to appear later in the campaign but for the sake of making the most fun demo I could the EAR will be placed in these earlier maps (renamed for Savage Land to better compliment its rebirth, it is now dubbed The Light Bringer) and persistent players may stumble upon the Driftwood Crossbow. I would appreciate feedback on these weapons to round out the rough edges for the final campaign.

Eventually I want to do very minor things to some of the old guns and some of the more useless inventory items. Namely, certain classic weapons might have alternate functions or gain some nuances to make them more interesting to use. I've discussed some of these ideas openly on discord. You may notice some of these in early stages of testing. Hopefully the Demo will be an invitation for talented people to help me see this stuff done.

As for other new things? You'll see.

Q: What about Dead Cell?

A: Its inventory is being looked at. Models and weapons were made by diamond, coded by Raven. I am just not sure what to do with the melee weapons as of yet. Of the map (maps) itself, currently in a vault until I have an idea. I'm willing to contract help on this and even pawn it off if need be. But it should be said that sometimes you can only take an idea so far.

The problem with Dead Cell stems from the fact that the concept of players fighting human enemies with melee weapons....just didn't work as I hoped. The level design was cool, the audio work was superb, and the new models made by Diamond were so good that I'll be adding some of the pickups in Savage Land. But the "game" part of it just never came together. It was awkward to play and not up to my standard of fun.

Q: Will the melee weapons be used in Savage Land?

A: At this time...I don't have a plan to do this. They would need to be finished, first off. They currently do not have a finished block function and they would need some work to be justifiably effective on Unreal enemies. And even then I'm not certain how fun they would be to actually use.

Q: What platforms, exactly, will Savage Land be intended for?

A: The demo was made on UT's editor. My testers and myself, however, played the two levels on both UT 436, Unreal, and Unreal Gold using the latest public Unreal 227 patch (227i). Ultimately, I envision a compatible release of the full project on Unreal 225/226 and Unreal Tournament 436. I will seek help to make sure of the final testing for old Unreal versions as I know there's a few different considerations to be made. Preferably, I'm hoping to at least settle for a workable version on 226 and 225. We will see, it may not be possible to do both. I'm also open to suggestions from the community on this, as I've been out of the game and I don't really know which versions are less worthwhile to pursue. Savage Land was not tested on either the UT 451 patch or the 469 patch. Patch 451 is notoriously unfriendly for SP playing. Alternately, the release of 469 is very new. I don't know much about it yet, other than assurances from many users that say Oldskool works fine. I see no reason NOT to try it if you are interested, it would be useful to use to see the results of patch testing.

I want to be very transparent about all of this. I wish for this one to be available on as many active Unreal platforms as can be managed by the time the final version is ready. There are lots of game modifications, renderer updates and preferences, and other engine improvements people have made/used over the years. My intention is to let users enjoy Savage Land from their preferred comforts. Just know that unlike Seven Bullets, no level was made with S3TC in mind. I may not know everything the community has done with S3TC texture packs since I was last around regularly, but Lightning Hunter has recently put out an amazing High Def skin package that replaces many of the default model skins. I officially endorse its use, though that would be up to players.

Q: What about using features from 227?

A: I did not have to use any assets or features from the 227 patch and in order to maintain cross-compatibility I do not plan to. But, I do wish for players to enjoy the campaign on 227 if they like. My last bit of testing on the Demo was done on Unreal Gold to make sure all the pawns behaved correctly (Much of my January delays had to do with correcting a lot of enemy events to make the experiences identical on both 227 and 436). The Demo will not use botpack or any native UT files, intentionally. The only assumed standard files not included with the demo will be from Unreal. A RTNP .utx is included just incase Unreal and UT players do not have it installed. In the full campaign release any minor packages from RTNP or UT in regards to textures or sounds will be regarded this way, but my goal is to borrow sparingly and only if necessary.

Q: What does the COOP situation look like?

A: Anyone that knows me is aware that I've never been satisfied by the lackluster (or non-existent) COOP component shoe-horned in on Seven Bullets. I've made some strives to make the two levels in the demo fun for COOPers, but quite honestly I would be very happy to hear player suggestions and criticisms once the Demo is live. I fully intend for Savage Land to have a COOP experience that is as memorable as the SP campaign. Like everything else, I'll need feedback on the Demo's COOP component. Please, rip it to shreds and tell me what doesn't work and what you'd like to be added.

I have reached out to COOP testers specifically in the making of the demo, even loaning a test build for use on RLcoopE servers (thank you to Kajgue and Eddy for doing this).

User avatar Mister_Prophet
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Subject: Re: Savage Land FAQ And Red Nemesis Queries

Post Posted: 06 Feb 2021, 17:58

Thread now Unlocked for discussion.

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Subject: Re: Savage Land FAQ And Red Nemesis Queries

Post Posted: 07 Feb 2021, 08:42

Will there be any music from the RD or BFNP soundtrack? If they are of course suitable for the atmosphere of the new project concept. I also remember very beautiful graphic effects with the new render. It was just mesmerizing. Will they find their place too? And will there be that famous map in the screenshots with the submarine? :) I played the demo and just enjoyed the architecture of the ship, thanks to Proph for the experience! We are waiting for more updates!

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Subject: Re: Savage Land FAQ And Red Nemesis Queries

Post Posted: 07 Feb 2021, 15:47

AndryxaXP wrote:Will there be any music from the RD or BFNP soundtrack? If they are of course suitable for the atmosphere of the new project concept. I also remember very beautiful graphic effects with the new render. It was just mesmerizing. Will they find their place too? And will there be that famous map in the screenshots with the submarine? :) I played the demo and just enjoyed the architecture of the ship, thanks to Proph for the experience! We are waiting for more updates!


On music. Before the demo I did not think too much about it but now that it is out and being played I would be interested in giving the levels a unique set of songs to go with a new Na Pali. I have not discussed it with anyone yet, going so far as to just use Unreal and RTNP placeholders. At some point in development I will make a formal request to the community I'm sure but I would like to have more levels to show to a musician so they could get a vibe for it. I will say that I would be exclusively interested in .umx format though.

On the Post Processing Effects we showed in an old tech demo, yeah. Because I'd prefer to infringe as little as possible on the player's preferred visual/renderer settings, that option is at least off the table for Savage Land. Either I would pursue them for another project, grant them to another project (I'm unofficially working with the Resurgence guys too atm, maybe they could find some use for it since it is a 227 only project), or possibly see about releasing the assets separately. Though as it was... Nemesis Renderer was fairly unfinished, and Raven is a busy person.

On the maps featured in the old promo shots. Some levels will appear again, yes. The submarine vehicle is unlikely going to be realized since Savage Land will not feature any vehicle levels, though there is a flooded vessel I'm trying to figure out how to insert into the campaign. I also thought some of these levels might make for fun one-offs.

I'm glad you enjoyed the demo :tup:

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Subject: Re: Savage Land FAQ And Red Nemesis Queries

Post Posted: 09 Feb 2021, 14:18

What I'm really interested in, since you try to get the best of all the sources you have to suit one final thing, but you also need more mappage...

Q: Out of the 15-20 planned maps, how many of them have been started and how many of them are close to be finished?
Prisons of the Unforchers Retold - more info: https://www.unrealsp.org/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=4565

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Subject: Re: Savage Land FAQ And Red Nemesis Queries

Post Posted: 09 Feb 2021, 17:27

Q: Out of the 15-20 planned maps, how many of them have been started and how many of them are close to be finished?

A: There are about 14 levels currently, most in states closer to be being done than otherwise. A couple of those are still pretty early, one in particular is pretty new. There are about 8 that are straight ready to be processed with Savage Package assets (including an excellent level made by Jet) but they are later in the campaign and I'm trying to focus more in chronological order hehe.

In terms of what hasn't been started, there are about four levels ideas I haven't gotten passed the planning phase that may be cut or combined. My approach to Savage Land is more about what works than maps existing for the sake of existing. If something doesn't quite work on its own or provide a meaningful sense of progress for the player I'll probably remove it from the list.

Good question! Will be added to the first post!

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Subject: Re: Savage Land FAQ And Red Nemesis Queries

Post Posted: 09 Feb 2021, 18:02

Is it possible to use those maps that will be removed from the campaign list and release them as a separate archive or make a regular DM? I heard that you want to release DC as COOP map.

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Subject: Re: Savage Land FAQ And Red Nemesis Queries

Post Posted: 09 Feb 2021, 18:29

Unsure really. I do think nowadays my tastes are more SP/COOP centric so if I were to remove/scrap a map for any reason in the campaign I could find a place for it elsewhere. It is true, since this FAQ was started I've had a chance to really examine the COOP community a little closer and Dead Cell might be more fitting as a COOP conversion. I've discussed being open to release single levels also as a way to preserve SP maps that don't fit in a campaign. Single Map releases in this community are a bit rarer.

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Subject: Re: Savage Land FAQ And Red Nemesis Queries

Post Posted: 10 Feb 2021, 19:11

Mister_Prophet wrote:Q: Out of the 15-20 planned maps, how many of them have been started and how many of them are close to be finished?
A: There are about 14 levels currently, most in states closer to be being done than otherwise. A couple of those are still pretty early, one in particular is pretty new. There are about 8 that are straight ready to be processed with Savage Package assets (including an excellent level made by Jet) but they are later in the campaign and I'm trying to focus more in chronological order hehe.

Now this sounds good! Originally, I got the impression from your first post that you would almost start anew. So, a release this decade seems likely. :D
Prisons of the Unforchers Retold - more info: https://www.unrealsp.org/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=4565

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Subject: Re: Savage Land FAQ And Red Nemesis Queries

Post Posted: 10 Feb 2021, 21:08

editor Dave wrote:Now this sounds good! Originally, I got the impression from your first post that you would almost start anew. So, a release this decade seems likely. :D


Well it's true that much of it is new...as in, new as 2013-2020 for much of it lol. Nah, there are a few new maps yet to be started for sure, but I've been spending a lot of time converting specific RD levels from back in the day into the Savage Land lineup as well (some as old as 2006). So while I do have a very healthy amount of levels there is still plenty of work to be done. Yes, preferably this decade \o/


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